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Dela,van L. Piers on 



K. W. Simpson & Co., Ltd., 
The Richmond Press, 


La/ayettc, Dublin. 





(Principal of Livingstone College.) 
Author of "Daily," "Do you pray?" &c. 



(Warden of Trinity College, Glenalmond). 



Keswick House, Paternoster Row, E C 

to the parents of 
George Lawrence Pilkington 







Preface ------- xl 

Introductory Chapter - - - - xi 

Home ------- i 

Uppingham ------ 8 

Cambridge Days - - - - - 20 

The Missionary Call - - - - - 4i 

A Visit to Kilimanjaro - - - - 65 

The Long March 


Uganda at last - - - - - ii3 

A Lull in the Storm - - - - 127 


Civil War - - - - - - i6o 

Language Study - - - - - 185 

The First Mutiny .... - 2o9 

A Revival - - - - - - 221 

On Furlough .-.-.. 240 

Bible Translation . . . . . 264 

The Church in Uganda : A Retrospect - - 272 

The Future of Uganda : A Forecast - - 287 

By Bicycle 10 Uganda 

A Last Word 


The Second Mutiny ----- 31Q 



This book is an attempt to record the life story of 
one who, whether as a boy at school, as a Master, 
or as a Missionary, " tried to do his duty." 
Wherever possible he speaks for himself, and it will 
be understood that the majority of the letters are 
private, and were never intended for publication. 
The usual allowances must therefore be made for 
some freedom of style, and for a certain abruptness 
in passing from one subject to another, which may 
be noticed in some letters. It is hoped that this 
memoir may form a fitting sequel to the biography 
of Mackay of Uganda, which tells the story of 
Uganda work during the earlier days of the Mission, 
up to the time when Pilkington was appointed to 
Uganda. With this in view, a title has been 
adopted which may serve to connect the two 
volumes. There is no attempt here to give a history 
of the Mission, except in so far as it refers to the life 
and work of Pilkington of Uganda. 

The author begs to tender his hearty thanks to 
the Rev. J. H. Skrine, friend and former master of 
George Pilkington, for an Introductory Chapter, 
and for many valuable suggestions ; to his parents 


and other members of the family, who have 
unreservedly placed at his disposal letters and other 
materials, besides assisting in many ways; to the 
Church Missionary Society for free permission to 
use any portion of their publications, and for 
supplying the maps which are given in this volume, 
and to which special attention is directed; to Messrs. 
Lafayette, of Dublin, for permitting the reproduction 
of the frontispiece ; and to] Dr. Cook, for allowing 
the use of the photograph taken by him in Uganda. 

Also to a large number of friends, who have 
supplied materials or otherwise rendered assistance. 

That this book may lead to practical results in the 
Evangelisation of Central Africa is the prayer of 

The Author. 


I AM asked to give my reminiscences of George 
Pilkington as a boy at Uppingham and later. 
My first sight of him was when he came from 
Ireland to try for an Entrance Scholarship, 
which he gained. His look is still distinct in my 
memory. A solid little figure of a boy, with features 
promising to be handsome when the nose should 
rise ; a complexion with the bloom on it of a boy 
from the soft West ; and fine eyes, large and deep. 
But most I remember the steady, purposeful air 
with a shade of attractive shyness in it. It was 
the look of a boy who would have, perhaps, genius, 
but certainly the power of doing something 
distinctive in life. Most boys at that age (and it is 
well for them) look as if they were only conscious 
of being boys ; he looked also conscious of going 
to be a man. 

I do not think that I knew him, as a boy, ' all 
round.' As a pupil in class, I saw much of him, 
and in another aspect which I am coming to. But 
he was not in my own House, and I hardly have a 
view of him in his ordinary life among other boys. 

The gravity which one noted in him when ' on 
duty' did not, I believe, prevent him from being as 
blithe as the rest of the world, and an eager talker ; 


also, I fancy, fond, as afterwards, of argument. On 
the football field I remember him distinctly, where 
his play was solid, business-like, of a good quality, 
though without genius. 

We formed good expectations of his scholarship, 
which were not disappointed, but classical scholar- 
ship, in the strict sense, was not a thing in which 
the strongest side of his mind was represented. He 
rather lacked pliancy and imagination in the 
direction of language; and his success in Latin and 
Greek was somewhat of a tour de force. His friends 
look back upon his classical studies as the 
foundation of his linguistic success in Uganda; and 
so, no doubt, in a sense they were. Yet it was not 
because he was a * scholar,' in the literary sense, 
that he made so great an interpreter and translator : 
the power of languages is not the same thing as 
the power of language, and his splendid work on 
the African tongue is owed, I expect, first to the 
scientific element in him, and next, to that 
characteristic of him noticed by those who knew 
him best from childhood — a power of minding his 
own business and doing it. 

Only one incident of his school life, worth 
chronicling, recurs to me. But it was nearly being 
the last. Bathing in the pool under the Weliand 
* lasher,' at Thorpe, before he could swim, he stepped 
out of his depth, went under, not once, but twice, with- 
in a few yards of his unconscious comrades, and was 
sighted and saved only as he sank a third time. He 
told^me there was no discomfort or anxiety in the 
experience. Remember, superstitious mortals, that 


one may be saved from drowning to die, not by the 
basest, but the noblest, of all deaths. 

But if I recall few incidents, there is a season of 
his school life which, among my memories of him, 
is to myself the most worth retaining, for it is the 
most prophetic of the life which followed. It is the 
season when he was preparing for confirmation. It 
fell to me to be his instructor, and as he did not 
join one of the confirmation classes (his confirmation 
was at home and at another time than the 
Uppingham Confirmation), but came to me alone, 
my observation of him was the more intimate. It 
is one best recorded, however, by briefly saying 
that, in the young boy then at my side, with his 
silent but felt intelligence and shy enthusiasm, I 
see the man who lived and died for Christ in Africa. 

And I ask myself, did he, in the later stress of 
religious vehemence, tell himself that this young boy 
was not yet converted, and did not yet know Christ 

aright ? 

* * * * 

When he left Uppingham, I saw him only once 
more. He came back there in the summer of 1886. 
He was much transformed. No wonder, for the 
tide of that religious impulse which set in during 
his Cambridge days was now running strong. I 
felt something of shock at first. The enthusiasm, 
of course, was boyish, crude as new wine always is, 
and slightly, though only slightly, aggressive. 
The strain of what I should have then called 
Salvationism had, in a man reading for a classical 
First, much of the unexpected and even odd : it 


wanted taking in. Then an Uppinghamian of 
those days could not but reel a shade of regret to 
nrtice how the ' old school ' sentiment and what we 
will call the ' Uppingham legend ' had been pushed 
(most naturally) into the background of his mind. 
But all this went by when we came, as we did at 
once, to close quarters, and he laid bare the new 
thoughts at work in him. He talked out the 
religious movement at Cambridge (which was leaving 
poor old Oxford a long way behind, I remember), 
and the group of men who brought the ' new wine ' 
in ; and we argued with much fulness, and mutual 
tolerance, I hope, the theory of Conversion, 
touching on the question, which some of his 
Cambridge friends had raised, of the practicability 
of sinlessness. Then we came upon Missions to 
the Heathen, and here, I must frankly say, I 
trembled ; for he told me of some one who had gone 
out to convert China (if I am correct) with no 
companions, and no appliances except the Bible in 
his pocket. George seemed to think my demur to 
this plan had some reason in it : but I trembled, 
seeing how congenial was the plan to the theories 
running in his brain, lest another life, and one I had 
some share in, should be lost in a morass. 

That fear of mine was not unshared by other 
friends. A knightly love of adventure conspired 
with the disproportion of thought inevitable in a 
time of religious stress, to push him towards courses 
which we thought barren, if not dangerous. It was 
with a sense of relief that we heard later of his 
destination to a well - organised field of mission 


work. Meanwhile, the touch of the ' clear spirit,' 
of the glorious whole-heartedness of him, charmed 
these apprehensions away. It was hard to do 
anything but rejoice in him. It was easy to say he 
was a little fanatical (why not, at one and twenty?), 
but whatever there was of the fanatic was sweetly 
redeemed by his sincerity, by a true freedom from 
self-conceit, in spite of his assurance of mind, and 
from any harshness, except, again, that which 
new wine must always have. Pleasant, too, it was 
to see how the old patriotism of school had only 
undergone transformation, like the rest of him, and 
was there again in the desire to evangelise. Two 
years later, I heard of him as having given the boys 
at Uppingham a singularl}^ moving address on 
religion and conduct. 

As we walked, we reached the Welland and the 
pool (it made him tell me the story) where he was 
all but drowned ; and I remembered how, when we 
had bathed, he discovered on the bank a gypsy 
camp, and was at once in talk with the wanderers 
on the greatest matters. Next morning he was 
away across the hot three miles to endow the camp 
with a Bible, which they promised him to read. 

Where could I leave off better than with these 
gypsies ? For I never talked with him again, and 
have no further first-hand memories of him, except 
a letter from Uganda describing some of his doings 
with a modesty and an absence of colouring which 
quite disguised the splendid character of his work 
there ; a note on his coming the last time to 
England with the promise of a visit to me ; and 


another, dated from an unmooring ship, to wish 
goodbye and speak his regret that his hard work 
had robbed us of the visit. So I like to think 
of him last among the gypsies. Are they not named, 
rightly or wrongly, of Africa ? Is not the little 
scene a picture in small of the scene to come, of the 
brave, whole-hearted, confident love of his 'bar- 
barian ' brother in Christ, which has been so echoed 
in the wild men's love for him ? 

And yet that must not be my very last word. 
For it does not fall to me to write of the Missionary, 
but of the boy of my ' old school.' So what I 
would say is this. A chivalrous boy from an English 
Public School is one of the beautiful things in God's 
world of men ; and, to me, that knightly tale in 
Africa will be most thought of as the full blowing 
of a beauty of soul which I saw first and shall 
last remember in a boy at Uppingham. 

John H. Skrine. 


u" -„ ?£Krs5^d°' 



Oh : 'tis a noble thing to trace 
Our lineage thro' a noble race ; 
But nobler far where lineage leads 
To nobler thoughts and nobler deeds. 

George Lawrenxe Pilkington was born on 
Sunday, June 4th, 1865, at 35, Gardiner's Place, 
Dublin ; being the fourth son of H. M. Pilkington, 
Esq., Q.C., of Tore, Westmeath. 

It is no mere formality to speak, in his case, of a 
noble ancestry, and the lines with which this chapter 
opens, taken from a story in verse, by his father, 
recounting the brave deeds of some early members 
of the Pilkington family, voice well the aspirations 
which have been handed down from generation to 
generation, and which found a response in none 
more truly than in Pilkington of Uganda. 

To come to more recent history, the family of 
the Pilkingtons is universally respected in the 
country side of Westmeath, and amid all the 
troublous times through which the Irish landlords 
have passed, they were able to secure the love and 
affection of their tenants. Though well known as 
an old Protestant family amid a Roman Catholic 
constituency, they have been able to over-ride the 


bitter prejudices which have so often been aroused 
over religious questions, and by their care of their 
poorer neighbours, endeared themselves to all, 
Roman Catholic and Protestant alike. 

George's father was a most respected member of 
the Irish Bar, from which he has now retired, and 
he is chiefly known in connection with the framing 
of the constitution of the Irish Church in which he 
played a prominent part, and, for his distinguished 
services in this respect, he was awarded the Honor- 
ary Degree of LL.D. Trinity College, Dublin. 

His mother was a member of the McDonnell 
family, so well known in Ireland, her grandfather 
being the celebrated Dr. McDonnell, of Belfast, 
and her uncle, the late Sir Alexander McDonnell, a 
scholar of the first rank, and one who, as Resident 
Commissioner to the Board of Education in Ireland, 
earned a brilliant reputation. Some words written 
concerning him at the time of his death, in the 
Spectator of Feb. 20th, 1875, are so striking in 
their likeness to the character of this Memoir, that 
they are worth recording. 

After a description of his life and work, the article 
concludes: — "Those who have enjoyed his conversa- 
tion must despair of expressing its charms. Frank, 
enthusiastic with the enthusiasm of a boy, full of 
recollection of the men he had known and of the 
statemanship of fifty years, yet happiest and most 
winning in the region of pure literature, and above 
all, poetry. With his physical constitution, his 
abstemiousness of habit, and his love of air and 
exercise, he seemed to bid fair for fourscore and 

HOME. 3 

ten, but bronchitis, caught in a season more than 
usually deadly, carried him off at the age of 80, 
leaving few like him or approaching him." 

With traditions such as these, it is not surprising 
that Mrs. Pilkington possessed an unusual power in 
the training of her children, to whose education and 
development she devoted herself. 

One who was a companion of George Pilkington 
as a boy, and who shared with him Mrs. Pilkington's 
teaching, says unhesitatingly that "his gift of 
languages came from his mother." It is remarkable 
that, in teaching her children to spell, she adopted a 
phonetic system, very similar to that system which 
George afterwards so strongly recommended as a 
basis for the learning of a foreign language, though 
we are not aware that he himself recognised the 
likeness to his mother's teaching. 

His mother, and those who knew him as a child, 
noticed from very early days a remarkable power of 
concentrating his attention upon anything he had in 
hand, whether it was upon his lessons or the 
manipulating of a toy. He seems to have had 
naturally a scientific bent of mind, rather than any 
particular taste for languages, and he was always 
anxious to learn about everything. 

He had a profound admiration for his uncle. Dr. 
Robert McDonnell, of Dublin, and was particularly 
fond of questioning him ; on one occasion when he 
had inflammation of the lungs and his uncle was 
attending him, his mind was absolutely set on the 
scientific aspects of his illness. " Now, Uncle 
Robert," he would say, " I want to know what is 


giving me this pain," or, '' My pulse is too quick, 
and I'm very hot, I want to understand about it." 

At that time, his mother was afraid that, young as 
he was, he had sceptical tendencies. He would 
often say when he had been reading in the Bible 
about some miracle, " I don't believe a word of it." 
On one occasion, when they were reading the old 
story of Elisha and the complaint of the sons of 
the prophets that there was " death in the pot," 
George vehemently exclaimed, " I don't believe 
there was death in the pot either before or after." 

On another occasion, he came to his mother v/ith 
the question, " Is every word in the Bible absolutely 
true ? " His mother's answer was one that might 
well be remembered by others under similar circum- 
stances, — " The Bible is intended to teach you to 
serve God ; read it for that purpose, and in that 
sense every single word of it is perfectly true." 

With the advice of various friends, it was con- 
sidered best that his attention should be turned to 
classics, rather than that his mathematical and 
scientific powers should be too strongly developed. 

The basis of his classical training was well laid by 
Mr. Bassett, to whose school, in Dublin, George 
went as a day scholar when he was eight years 

Mr. Bassett seems to have been a schoolmaster of 
great power, and with an intense belief in the 
influence of Latin and Greek. He was noted for 
extreme accuracy, and was a strict disciplinarian. 

A former schoolfellow writes : — " He may be said 
to have been Mr. Bassett's ' white boy,' as he was 

HOME. 5 

clever and hard-working, and was always well up in 
his work. He was often held up to us other boys as 
an example we would do well to follow. He was 
by no manner of means, however, a bookworm. On 
the contrary, he was fond of football and of all other 
games, and took an active part in them. 

He was of a distinctly pugnacious turn, and I 
remember many a light in which he played a 
principal part. I have very vivid and distinct 
recollections of a terrible encounter I had with him, 
which ended in much bloodshed. We bathed our 
bleeding noses in the pond in Wilton Square, 
Dublin, in the presence of an admiring crowd. 

He was chiefly characterised by a certain stub- 
bornness of will and a tenacity of purpose which 
showed themselves by his hard work at his books, 
his pluck and doggedness in a fight or in games, and 
his determination in sticking to a thing, once he had 
put his hand to it." 

Another, writing of the same time, says: " He was 
always a boy with great confidence in himself. Often 
he would almost irritate us by the way he would 
develop a line of his own in any game we were play- 
ing. He was always full of spirits." 

Although born in Dublin, and at school there 
later on, he spent the greater part of his childhood 
at his father's country seat at Tore, in the county of 
Westmeath. Here he was in his element, revelling 
in all kinds of outdoor occupations. Here he gained 
his knowledge of cooking, which was so useful to 
him afterwards, and he was known, with one of his 
brothers, to have improvised a rough oven in a field 


near his home, so that he was quite prepared for the 
sort of cooking which fell to his lot on the march to 
Uganda and elsewhere. 

It was in the old home that he gained from his 
mother his knowledge of cows, which gave him the 
proud position of being in later years the chief 
Uganda dairyman. 

He was fond of all kinds of animals, and had a 
special affection for pigeons, of which there were a 
considerable number at his father's home. 

George was ready for all kinds of games with his 
brothers and sisters, and had a leaning to anything 
of a mechanical nature. Electric bells, telephones, 
or little engines had a fascination for himx, and he 
was exceedingly fond of watching any kind of 

At the same time he evinced, even at an early age, 
a remarkable appreciation of books, and seemed to 
take in the points of a story. When only ten years 
old, his mother writes of him : " The boys are in 
immense delight with ' Ivanhoe,' and I, as well 
pleased to read it as if for the first time. George 
gave witness to the admirable writing, by springing 
to his feet and calling out with flashing eyes : ' It's 
not fair, it's not fair, three of them had no right to 
come at him at once,' when we were reading about 
Bois Guilbert, Front de Boeuf, and Athelstanc, all 
attacking Ivanhoe." 

Thus, in his early years, he gave evidence of the 
chief traits in his character, indomitable persever- 
ance, a keen sense of what was right, and a deter- 
mination to do it, though without much religious 


impression, and, withal, every inch a boy, with a 
boy's faihngs and a boy's instincts, only with some 
premonition of the man that he was to be. 




H^rc from the land of the sun, of the blazing sand and the 

Write 1 a letter to you, my brothers afar in the home land. 
Written in metre strange, in ancient hexameters, metre 
Not unfamiliar to you who, grinding away in your studies 
Late on a Saturday night, fill up the due complement weekly. 
Brothers I say— not only as schoolfellows — brothers in kindred, 
Race, and language ; and oh, how dear is this brotherhood 

We who have missed it long can realize. Brothers we have 

Africans tried and true, who love us, whom we love ; united, 
Yes, by the mightiest bond, the surest, the dearest, eternal 
As is the Lord who binds us in one. And yet there is some- 
Something we miss, and our hearts go imagining, wondering, 

Conjuring up old scenes, old faces, old voices, recalling 
What we had never prized till we lost them, the blessings of 

Rich inheritance, known in its fulness to those who in far 

Mourn at the lack of love, at the lack of joy, at the tedious 
Round of a hopeless life, wherein joy-bells are silent, 



Joy-bells that only wake at the voice of the Lord of all glad- 
ness — 

Noisy, but joyless mirth, discordant, meaningless, aimless, 

Empty cackling of geese as they splash in the mud of the 
horsepond ; 

Not the full-throated hymn, the melody born of the woodlands, 

Born of freedom and joy welling up at the bidding of nature. 

While pure streams spontaneous sing pagans in harmony with 
them ; 

Stagnant mirth of the world, that wots not the joy of the 
Ransomed — 

Yet here joy-bells have waked that will yet end the groaning of 

Ages of bloodshed and wrong, of rapine and raiding triumphant. 

Oceans of tears wrung out of tortured slaves ; that will end 

Long, dark night, that already have ushered in " joy in the 

Thus I to you, my dear brothers of Uppingham, home of my 

Home that I loved, and do love, and will ever love ; where yet 
a vision 

Floats of a face I know, whose frown was sore punishment to 

Whose smile heaven : a face where love and wisdom were 

With adamantine will ; his voice no more through the school- 

Rings harshly sweet— the old man— our second founder, my 

Master, so far as to man that title is loyally given. 

You who inherit his name, his work, his zeal, and his fore- 

You who inherit the wealth, the stored-up blessings of ages. 

Gathered by saints and apostles, by heroes who suffered and 

Won for us freedom and light, the soul-gladdening light of the 


What is the issue to be ? What legacy, say, to your children 
'.Vill you bequeath ? What increment added ? What further 

Yet of noble deeds, what self-crucifixion in laying 
All that you have, that you are, at the feet of a crucified 

Saviour ? 
This my message to you from the land of the sun and the 

Borne from far Uganda, where blood of African martyrs 
Freely was shed because they accepted Christ's perfect 

Took Him to be their Saviour from sin and from sin's retri- 
bution ; 
You, the Christendom's heirs, you heirs of England, you sons 

English martyrs and saints, you rightful owners of heaven, 
Sell not, despise not your birthright, your heritage, heirs of the 

So farewell, and remember in field, in hall, or in class-room, 
You are in training for deeds to be done in the might of the 

Worthy the mighty past and the glory whereon you are 



C.M.S., Mengo, Uganda, 

Saturday, 8th July, 1893. 

The choice of Uppingham, as a Public School, had 
already been made in the case of George's eldest 
brother, largely owing to the advice of the late Dr. 
Phillips, then master of Queen's College, Cambridge, 
Mr. Pilkington's brother-in-law. Since then, Mrs. 
Pilkington had visited the school and was more 
than ever satisfied that this was the right school for 
her boys. 

The one paramount consideration which led to 


choice of Uppingham was undoubtedly the great 
reputation of Edward Thring, who was not only a 
clever and distinguished man, but what is much 
rarer, a great headmaster. What Mrs. Pilkington 
thought of him is well stated in a letter to her 
husband during the time that George was at the 
school. She writes : " I am, every time I hear him, 
struck with how remarkably Mr. Thring is one of 
those who ' speak with authority.' I never heard 
anything in the way of reading, to me, so fine as his 
reading of the Commandments. Every vestige of a 
thought ' is there anv other school I should like 
better ? ' vanishes the instant I hear him say * I 
am the Lord thy God, thou shalt have none other 
gods but me.' The intense force with which, with 
his whole being, he himself is loyal to that God 
comes out, and it is a thing that, in these days of 
unsettled belief, is invaluable." 

In another letter from Uppingham, Mrs. 
Pilkington writes : " At three o'clock afternoon 
chapel, we had a beautiful little sermon from Mr. 
Thring, about ten minutes long, on these words: 
' Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done.' I rarely 
come across anyone who expresses with such force 
and clearness just precisely my own opinions about 
religion and education. What we want for our 
boy is just precisely and exactly what he wants 
for him. I look with wonder at that large chapel 
perfectly full of boys, and reflect that, personally 
and by name and character, that man knows them 
every single one. ' More than three or four 
hundred boys,' he says, * no headmaster can 


possibly know, and he has no business to have 
more boys than he can know.' George says there's 
not a doubt that he does know them, both in their 
games and their work." 

George entered Uppingham at Easter, 1878, 
obtaining a scholarship of £^0 per annum, and so 
rapidly did he rise in the school, that, by the end of 
1879, he was in the sixth form. That he was a very 
small boy to be in the sixth is shown by an incident 
recalled by a contemporary of his, who had assisted 
in putting him into an empty top shelf of the sixth 
form room (the old library), to remind him that, 
though he might be the cleverest, he was still the 
Baby of the Sixth. 

His house was Fircroft, and his first House- 
master, Mr. Rawnsley, speaks of him as follows : 
" He was always a merry-natured boy and ready for 
fun, and was a boy of genuine courage, always 
ready to dare anything, and would have been 
pleased to lead anv sort of a forlorn hope at any 
time since I first knew him. His ability there 
was no doubt of from the very first, he always 
worked well, and he was always absolutely truthful." 

Of his first few years at school there is little to be 
said, except what has been already mentioned, which 
could not be said of most boys, unless it were his 
steady application to his work, and the enthusiasm 
with which he entered into every department of 
work or play. 

As time went on, however, his work began to be 
more and more appreciated, and it was evident that 
his was to be a career of more than ordinar}/ success. 


" This boy is going to do us credit, Mrs. Pilkington," 
was the remark of Mr. Thring, some time in the 
summer of 1882, and even in the previous Easter, 
Mr. Thring had written about him, " I am exceed- 
ingly pleased with his work . . . and if he, as I 
feel sure he will, continues steadily on, and stays 
here his full time, I feel absolutely certain he will 
win a high place." 

During Mrs. Pilkington's visit to Uppingham, in 
May, 1882, she was staying chiefly with the Rev. 
J. H. Skrine, who became an intimate friend of the 
family and took the greatest interest in George, who 
was ever afterwards greatly attached to him. On 
this occasion, Mrs. Pilkington spoke to George 
about his future. She writes : '' I told him Mr. 
Thring hoped and expected he would distinguish 
himself at the University. He was delighted, and 
said, ' Now, what do you think of me mother ? ' I 
thought, I wonder what you would think of yourself 
if I told you the half of what Mr. Thring did say." 

In the same letter, Mrs. Pilkington speaks of 
having told Mr. Skrine that Mr. Thring had 
proposed that George should stay on for two years 
more, and added, " Mr. Thring found him so 
young." Mr. Skrine answered, " Well, you see, he 
is pretty sure to be second in the school next term, 
that must age him a little." The complaint that he 
was too young seems to have been the chief fault 
that could be found against him, and his House- 
master, Mr. Perry, complained that he was too fond 
of the little boys, and allowed them to take liberties 
with him which they ought not to take with their 


captain. This love of boys he always retained, and, 
even as a Missionary, he did not lose a certain 
amount of almost boyish enthusiasm. 

For the last two years of his time, he was captain 
of his House, and Mr. Perry wTites : " I felt that 
things were absolutely safe in his hands." He 
continues, *' That he exercised a good influence in 
the school generally, and still more in the House, is 
undoubted. I may say that I had reason lor 
knowing that there was a certain amount of bad 
language used in the House soon after he became 
Head. With the help mainly of Pilkington, I 
believe we succeeded in stopping this, and Pilkington, 
later, was able to assure me that for many months 
he had not heard an evil word spoken in the House. 
If such words were spoken, it was in secret corners, 
and not where the public opinion of the House 
could be brought to bear." 

In October, 1882, Pilkington secured another 
scholarship of £^0 a year, which is thus announced 
by Mr. Thring : — 

" Dear Mrs. Pilkington, — 

Doubtless you have already received the 
notice of your son's election to a scholarship in the 
school for two years. I congratulate you heartily. 
He is doing very well, and giving me much satis- 
faction. I think he will be a really successful scholar. 
With kind regards, 

Believe me, 

Yours very truly, 

Edward Thring." 


During the next Christmas Holidays, he obtained, 
largely through the recommendation of Mr. Thring, 
a holiday tutorship to some boys at Windermere. 
Mrs. Broadrick, their mother, gives us the following 
reminiscences of his stay with them at that time : — 

" My first recollection of George Pilkington is one 
winter afternoon in December, 1882, when he 
arrived at the Windermere station from Uppingham 
to commence his duties as companion and tutor to 
my three little boys, during the Christmas Holidays. 
He was not more than 17 then, and very young and 
fresh and bright he looked as he stood there on the 
platform and introduced himself to us all. He came 
with the highest testimonials. I remember Mr. 
Thring, the headmaster, said that, if we could prevail 
upon G. L. Pilkington to take the charge, we might 
indeed consider ourselves most fortunate. And very 
soon we found this out for ourselves. A deep friend- 
ship sprang up between him and the boys. His 
scholarly attainments and high position in the school 
filled them with respect, almost amounting to awe, 
and his keeness for all games and outdoor exercises 
was an endless and most delightful resource, during 
those wintry days and long evenings. 

What struck me very specially about him at that 
time was his remarkable power of concentration. 
He put his whole heart and soul into whatever he 
undertook at the moment, both in work and play. 
If he was reading to himself, no outside noise, or 
chatter, or merriment seemed to distract him in the 
least — he was completely absorbed in his book ; that 
accomplished, he would fling it aside, rise up and be 


the truest boy again, as eager in the successful 
manufacture of small fireworks and balloons as if 
that was the highest object of his ambition. Tobog- 
ganing down snowy slopes, runs after the harriers 
up and down the frosty mountains, rowing expedi- 
tions on the lake, merry games in the long evenings, 
made the holidays fly, until, one bitterly cold day, 
he caught a chill which developed into a sharp attack 
of pneumonia. 

He was ill for a few weeks, but never was invalid 
more cheery or light-hearted. His mother came, 
and how glad he was, and how difficult it was to keep 
him properly quiet. He requested that there might 
be a special display of fireworks to celebrate his first 
coming downstairs, and I can see him now, laughing 
and rubbing his hands with glee as he watched 
through the drawing-room window, as the little com- 
positions went off with more or less success." 

But to return to Uppingham, Pilkington could not 
be called a distinguished athlete, though he took part 
in most kinds of sports. Football was more to his 
taste than cricket, as he considered it waste of time 
waiting about for his turn to bat. 

He was a long distance runner and was keen on 
paper chases, which gave opportunity for the testing 
of his powers of plodding, which were shewn in his 
running as they were also in his work. 

In his last year, he was elected a member of the 
school committee of games, a high honour among 
the boys, and he was one of the five out of the nine 
members who were elected by ballot of the rest of 
the school, a thing which necessarily speaks much 


as to his popularity. At the same time he was not 
popular with all, as Mr. Perry writes: "he was 
too uncompromising for this ; he also saw the 
ridiculous side of things rather too keenly, and did 
not hesitate to show it : boys don't like being 
laughed at, even when there is not a trace of unkindly 
feeling in the laughter." At the same time he could 
bear chaff at his own expense, and his nickname of 
" Pilks," which he bore at school, stuck to him 
through life. 

Another point which Mr. Perry mentions is 
alluded to by very many who knew him, and that 
is " his really beautiful and melodious reading. In 
those days, Mr. Thring made a great point of good 
reading, and Professor D'Orsay used to visit us for 
three days, twice every year, and every boy in the 
school used to have to read from the platform before 
the whole assembled school. Prizes also were given 
for reading, and Pilkington won several. He was 
one of the best readers I have ever heard, both in 
humorous as well as pathetic passages. Of course, 
this was partly due to his general intelligence, but 
he had a remarkably sympathetic and melodious 
voice, and the touch of Irish accent seemed to add 
to its charm." 

His great friend, Mr. Martineau, alludes to this, 
and adds, " His voice and style were suited to a 
lady's part ; he was very clear and refined in his 
mode of reading. He was also generally one of 
those who took part in the school plays given on 
other occasions." 

Referring to his aptitude in this respect, Mr. 


Skrine writes to Mrs. Pilkington to tell her how well 
George had acquitted himself at a Shakespeare 
reading. "I find George is starting to-day, and 
will be with you sooner than any note can be, but 
he won't have told you, what I can, that, in the 
opinion of good judges, the scene in which Portia 
figured was the best bit in the play. I don't think 
they are wrong, and am rather proud of my scholar's 
distinction in this new field. He has naturally a 
very good voice, and he put a degree of feeling into 
his part, which we hardly expect in so young a boy. 
I wished you had made your visit to Uppingham, 
and made it just then. 

That you may have your due, I ought to add that 
one of our audience told me that the boy had his 
mother's voice and manner. Well, it is, perhaps, a 
little thing that his performance should give the 
hearers pleasure, and do himself credit, but it is not 
a little thing that he should have the power of 
feeling deeply what is noble and beautiful in 

Perhaps the most striking testimony to his power 
of effective reading was given by a boy, who, in 
telling of the reading by Pilkington of a piece 
of Shakespeare about the putting out of Prince 
Arthur's eyes, remarked, ''there was not a boy in 
the room who could help blubbing." 

Among other prizes at school, he obtained the 
H olden essay, but what was of more value than any 
other was the silver " Good conduct medal," which 
he received when leaving, with the inscription, "For 
good work and unblemished conduct." 


Whilst at school, he was prepared for confirmation 
by Mr. Skrine, and he used for some time to attend 
a Sunday evening New Testament class, which Mr. 
Shrine held privately at his house for a few boys. 

No more fitting close to the story of his career as 
a Public School boy could be given than the words 
employed by his House-master, Mr. Perry, as 
Pilkington was leaving Uppingham. Writing to 
his mother, he says, " Whatever happens to George 
in the future, and there is every reason to hope that 
it will be a worthy continuation of his beginning, 
the good done by his bright example, and manly 
and consistent stand on the side of right, can never 
be blotted out. What he has done for our House 
has laid me and all its well-wishers under a very 
deep debt of gratitude." And once more he says, 

"I do not think I can say anything more than that 
his loss to me, as Captain of the House, seems 
almost irreparable. Few boys, I think, will have 
left with a fairer record." 



In October, 1884, Pilkington came into residence 
at Pembroke College, Cambridge, having obtained 
a Classical Scholarship there, and a leaving ex- 
hibition from Uppingham. He was quartered 
with other scholars of his College in the new 
buildings, and there entered upon his University 
course, which was to have the most important 
influence upon his future career. His first ex- 
amination was the Little-go, which, but for an 
amusing incident, might have been passed over 
without notice, but, on his way to Cambridge 
Pilkington had lost his luggage, and in his port- 
manteau was the classical author which was set for 
the examination. As he had depended upon looking 
it over at the last moment, he was obliged to go 
into his examination quite unprepared, and, though 
he was able to do the translation perfectly, he was 
absolutely ignorant of the subject matter of the 
book, and so he was ploughed in the Classical part 
of his Little-go ! 

It must not be thought from this incident that it 
was Pilkington's plan to leave all his work for 
examinations until the last moment. On the 



contrary, he had an intense horror of cramming, 
which he had derived from his teachers at Upping- 
ham, who had no sympathy with the modern craze 
for results in examinations, but sought rather to 
turn out good men. 

Throughout his Cambridge career, he worked 
steadily about six hours a day, and, as soon as one 
examination was over, he began to work for the 
next. He always timed himself when at work with 
his watch before him, so that he knew how much he 
was getting through, but he never sat up late to work. 

He had definite methods of study which must 
have influenced largely his linguistic work when in 
Uganda. One of his contemporaries remembers him 
saying: — "Many men who are in for the Classical 
Tripos try to read all of every Classical author that 
is at all likely to be set. My object has been to get 
such a perfect knowledge of the root ideas of the 
language, that I can understand anything at first 

He took part in various forms of athletics, but 
did not distinguish himself particularly in sports ; 
at the same time he fully maintained his reputation 
for energy and perseverance in whatever he took up. 
He was fond of walking, and did a certain amount 
of bicycling. 

The College debates, in connection with the 
Martlet Debating Society, engaged a good deal of 
his attention, and he was also a member of the 

When he first went up, he was very keen on 
whist, which he studied with the aid of 


" Cavendish," and he used to have whist parties in 
his rooms, probably in connection with an Upping- 
ham Social Club. A member of this club at the 
same time, who was at another College, remembers 
playing a rubber in his rooms, but adds, " we 
played for love at his wish." 

His love of argument is well illustrated by a 
postscript to one of his letters, in which he writes : 
** Whether has the man who draws first in a lottery, 
or who draws last, the best chance of drawing the 
winning lot ? I argued this question with the 
Senior Mathematical Scholar of our year in this 
College, and proved this morning, to his satisfaction, 
that I had been right, he wrong." 

It was about the middle of his time at Cam- 
bridge, that the great change took place which 
eventually led to his going abroad as a Missionary. 
In order to understand this aright, it may be 
interesting to give a short sketch of a religious 
movement, which at that time was in progress in 
the University. 

In the year 1882, Moody and Sankey visited 
Cambridge, and held their memorable meetings. 
By many, the idea of a comparatively uneducated 
man like Moody addressing an audience of under- 
graduates was ridiculed, and their first meeting was 
a most uproarious one. Moody gave his address on 
the subject of Daniel the Prophet, whom he would 
persist in calling " Dannel," and when Sankey had 
given a solo he was encored. Yet, by the end of 
the Mission, an effect was produced in Cambridge 
which has never been effaced. 


Largely owing to Moody's work in Cambridge, 
Douglas Hooper (through whom, later, Pilkington 
was led to offer for service in Africa), was converted, 
and, as a result of Moody's work in London later 
on, C. T. Studd, the well-known cricketer, decided 
to go out to China as a Missionary, and it was in 
the early part of 1885 that he, with a party, who 
have been often spoken of as the " Cambridge 
Seven," went out to China under the China Inland 
Mission. This party visited Cambridge before setting 
forth, and their visit greatly quickened the 
Missionary spirit in the 'Varsity. 

It was at this period that the attention of under- 
graduates at the Universities was being turned to 
the opportunities for influencing boys and girls of 
the wealthier classes, during their holidays, by 
means of seaside services. Mr. Edwin Arrpwsmith 
was the leader in this movement, and with him 
parties of young men from Oxford and Cambridge 
visited such places as Scarborough and Llandudno 
in connection with the Children's Special Service 
Mission, with which Pilkington was closely iden- 
tified on leaving Cambridge. 

A particularly strong party visited Llandudno in 
the summer of 1885, including Sidney Swann, of 
the Cambridge boat, and Tyndale-Biscoe, the 
Cambridge cox ; also Hector MacLean, from the 
Oxford boat, and Cecil Boutflower, who has since 
written a sketch of Pilkington 's life for the Upping- 
ham School Magazine. Wigram, Carr, Lewis, 
Paterson, and others, who, later on, went forth as 
missionaries of the Church Missionary Society, were 


members of this band, and that happy month, spen 
in one another's society and in such splendid work, 
had far-reaching results. 

One result of this work was that those who took 
part in it were led to see that it was not sufficient to 
bring the Gospel to bear upon the poorer classes of 
society, but that a great responsibility lies at our 
door towards those who have been well called the 
*' poor rich," and who have been greatly neglected 
as regards spiritual things. This led men to see the 
great opportunities which presented themselves at 
the 'Varsity to Christian men in seeking to win their 
brother undergraduates to Christ. 

Accordingly, it was decided to hold some special 
meetings for prayer at Cambridge, at the beginning 
of the October term, and from these were arranged 
a series of meetings, held by undergraduates for 
undergraduates in the Alexandra Hall. Sunday 
after Sunday, men testified to the great things that 
God had done for them. There was nothing par- 
ticularly remarkable about the addresses, but they 
came from full hearts ; they broke down the barrier 
of constraint which is so often felt in speaking of 
Spiritual things, and a great impulse was given to 
the work of God in Cambridge University. 

Meanwhile, there had come up to Pembroke, in 
October, 1884, at the same time as Pilkington, a 
very remarkable set of men. Their work may be 
best described by one of them, now a Missionary of 
the Church Missionary Society in India. The Rev. 
H.J. Molony writes: — "I cast in my lot at once 
with the most aggressive evangelistic set; and, 


perhaps you will understand why moderate men 
felt it difficult to join us, when I say that four of us, 
who were nicknamed in the College ' the four 
apostles,' divided the fifty-two Freshmen of our year 
between us, and visited every man in his rooms, 
until we had direct conversation with him on 
Spiritual matters. To whom Pilkmgton fell in this 
visitation, I cannot remember, but very likely it 
was to Arthur Klein, our leader, a deeply loving and 
faithful disciple of Christ. In the summer of 1885, 
we held some meetings for our year, after hall, in 
the rooms of Mr. H. T. G. Kingdon (of Clare), in 
Silver Street. I think it was at the first (and 
whether there was more than this one meeting I 
forget) to which Pilkington and other men came. 
One of us (perhaps R. D. Bishop, who lost his life 
by accident in the summer vacation) spoke on the 
words, ' when I am weak, then am I strong,' and I 
well remember that Pilkington stopped behind, and 
I see him now, as he stood with his back to the 
fireplace, and rated us well for preaching such 

At about that time, George told one of his sisters 
that Klein and his companions were mad, and he 
probably would have scorned the idea that these 
men could have any influence upon him, yet, in 
spite of their unwisdom, as many may think, and 
the want of tact which may have been shown in 
some of their methods, it was largely owing to their 
instrumentality that Pilkington was brought to that 
great crisis in his life which he always referred to as 
his conversion. 


Letters written about that time by George to his 
mother, describing this change, are not to be found, 
but, in answer to a question addressed to him by 
the authorities of the China Inland Mission, in 
November, 1887, as to the circumstances and time 
of his conversion, he answers, "Two years ago, I 
beheve, on taking a Sunday school class ; but at 
that time 'I saw men as trees walking.' Ever since, 
my eyes have been opening more and more." 
From his friends at Pembroke we learn, however, 
some interesting particulars of some of the events 
which must have influenced him. Amongst others 
were, probably, some words spoken at a very 
extraordinary meeting of the College Debating 

The meeting had been called for the arranging of 
the papers which the Society should take in, and it 
was the occasion when each man proposed his 
favourite papers, and various men took the oppor- 
tunity of ventilating their own hobbies. The 
Sporting section, for instance, would bring forward 
" the Pink un " ; the Ritualistic party, " the Church 
Times," and so forth. 

Klein, and his followmg, consequently decided to 
make this an opportunity of addressing men in the 
College who would not ordinarily come to an 
evangelistic meeting. They therefore proposed the 
" Life of Faith," and Klein proceeded, amid some 
uproar, to give a ten minutes address in which he 
said there were two classes of msn there in that room, 
those who professed to be Christians, and those who 
made no profession, and then he gave it as his 


opinion that those who made a profession of being 
Christians, were not half so real as those who made 
no profession, and that if the former would take 
example from the latter in the thoroughness of their 
methods, it would be a great thing for Christianity. 
Three other men followed. Brand, Bishop and John 
Mclnnes, so far as they could do so amid the fre- 
quent interruptions, and so the meeting ended. 
Strange though it may seem, it was probably from 
this meeting that Pilkington was led to' see that, 
though he was outwardly religious, his heart was not 
right in the sight of God. 

Another friend, Murray Webb-Peploe, speaks of 
the influence upon him of the meetings in the 
Alexandra Hall. He writes : " There it was that, 
for the first time, he was convinced of sin, and saw 
himself to be a lost sinner in the sight of God, with- 
out hope, or peace, except that which Jesus Christ 
had provided on His cross. I cannot say how long 
he was in this state of conviction, but, I believe, 
from his own confession, he was unhappy and 
miserable for some weeks, ' seeking rest and finding 
none.' Here, however, his godly training stood 
him in great stead in his need, for he knew some- 
thing of his Bible, and betook himself to it most 
earnestl}', striving with prayer to God to obtain 
guidance into the peace of soul for which he longed. 
I believe it was in his own room, in the New 
Buildings of Pembroke, that dear old Pilkington at 
last found that peace and joy of heart, which so 
characterised him ever afterwards. I know of no 
human instrument in the matter. I believe he 


withdrew himself into the desert of lonehness, as it 
were, alone with God — and prayed until the light 
came direct from God in His written Word to 
his soul. I cannot help thinking that this was what 
made Pilkington such a champion afterwards for the 
Truth of God in the Bible. His change of heart, his 
conversion, was not of man, nor by man, but entirely 
the work of God the Holy Ghost, to whom be all the 
glory. This one thing he used to tell me, however, 
that he thanked God for his faithful friends at 
Cambridge, who, in his own words, ' would not let 
him alone ' until they saw the grace of God working 
in his heart. 

From that time onwards, there was no man at 
Cambridge more energetic and earnest in seeking 
the salvation and spiritual welfare of his friends. He 
attended regularly at the Sunday evening meetings, 
at the Alexandra Hall, and almost invariably, I 
believe, brought men with him, that they might, if 
possible, share the blessing and joy of heart, which 
he himself had thus learnt to know. 

He was a teacher at the Jesus Lane Sunday 
School most of his time at Cambridge, but his work 
there became, after his conversion, a new thing 
altogether, in that he sought the definite salvation 
and turning to God of his class, as he had not done 
before. He also joined enthusiastically in the 
College open-air services, in Barnwell, on the 
Sunday evenings of the May Term, and whether 
it was on such occasions, or when he gave his 
personal testimony at the Alexandra Hall, his 
addresses always were characterized by clearness 


and definiteness of Spiritual truth and personal 

It was a great privilege to work with Pilkington. 
His uncompromising attitude in regard to sin of any 
kind, and his clear perceptions and definition of 
salvation were truly helpful and encouraging to 
those who listened to him. He never hid his light 
under any pretence of a bushel, and it seemed to me 
as if he made a special point of telling his friends and 
acquaintances of former days of his newly-found joy 
and peace in Christ." 

That this was so is fully borne out by an old 
school friend of his, who writes : " Though at 
College we were constant friends, in my pigheaded 
ness, when he took to his more serious line, and 
would discuss religious questions in my rooms when 
other friends were there, I told him, unless he could 
avoid that subject, I could not welcome him there, 
consequently he, for a long time, would not come to 
see me. I suppose, feeling it his duty to put for- 
ward his views on every occasion." At the same 
time he adds that this had no effect on their friend- 
ship. Of his habits, a contemporary writes : — " As a 
matter of fact, though I pretty often met him and 
always greatly admired him, I wasn't very intimate 
with him. I think the very greatness and goodness 
of the man, perhaps, kept men, with his high objects 
and thoughts, from getting very near him. His 
soul was * like a star, and dwelt apart.' To know 
him was to condemn oneself. I don't think, with 
his work and various engagements, he had time 
for the long hours of idle talk, which may be a 


waste of time, but enable men to know each other 
so well. Pilkington seemed even then to have 
greater things to occupy him. 'Wist ye not 
that I must be about my Father's business ? ' You 
could not meet him and not feel he was different 
from most men in his purpose and objects. But 
I think I used to be most impressed by the great 
happiness he possessed. Another thing was the 
respect all showed for his goodness and character, 
how it influenced their conversation and behaviour." 

Of the change that took place in his life there can 
be no doubt ; but, it may be asked, what were the 
great truths which laid hold upon him, and gave 
him the rest and peace and happiness which all 
noticed in his life ? Of this he shall speak for 
himself, and two letters — one to his aunt and the 
other to one of his sisters — give us his answer. 

Writing to his aunt, the late Mrs. Phillips, at 
Queen's Lodge, on March 6th, 1889, he comments 
on a service which he had attended at Holy Trinity 
Church, Cambridge, whilst staying with his uncle 
and aunt, in the following words : " Mr. Sholto 
Douglas preached about the assurance of forgiveness 
and salvation in this world, showing that a true 
child of God is not only saved here, but may, and 
should, know it. My friend, on leaving the church, 
expressed much pleasure at the sermon ; and I, not 
knowing the man well, but believing him to be a 
Christian, began telling him how, when I came up 
to Cambridge as a freshman, I had been bitterly 
opposed to any such belief, and considered it absurd 
presumption for any man to say that he was saved 


He answered : ' I should have thought the same 
before to-night.' However, he had seen from Mr. 
Sholto Douglas's quotations from the Bible what 
the true and glorious teaching there is. I was 
greatly encouraged by this." 

It was no doubt the realisation of the great fact 
of the possibility of having real assurance of salvation 
in this life that gave to him the peace and joy of 
which he so otten spoke, but there was more than 
that, and we have a much more detailed statement 
of his position, in a letter which George wrote to his 
sister, in continuation of a conversation, as follows : 
*' The first thing (this is to finish what I was going 
to say in the 'bus) is for a man to realise that he is a 
sinner, and then, to desire to flee from the wrath to 
come. This is hateful to man's pride. ' I never 
intend to be driven to do right from fear : I work 
from love.' (Just what I used to say when I was 
unconverted and only working from love of self, and 
when I was converted, but in the dark, for a year at 
least.) Let a man once see that he is a sinner, 
deserving — in the past, in the present, and for ever 
(no matter how much saved), still always deserving 
— to perish everlastingly ; that in him there is 
nothing, and can never be anything, which can 
merit salvation, then he can say and understand : 

I ask no other righteousness ; 

I need no other plea : 
It is enough that Jesus died, 

And that he died for me. 

Seeing that his justification rests altogether on 
something outside of himself, he can accept the 


words, ' My sheep shall never perish ' ; seeing that 
he can never deserve to perish more than at the 
present moment, he can believe that he is predesti- 
nated unto eternal salvation before the world began. 
Then he can say ' Abba Father,' indeed, in perfect 
and child-like confidence. And all this depends on 
his seeing his own sinfulness. Then gratitude 
comes in. Now gratitude is not a power to keep us 
from sin, though many try to make use of it in this 
way. Gratitude ought to send us to the only true 
source of power and victory ; gratitude ought to 
make us wish to lead holy and consistent lives, and 
to win others to the Saviour; but only the Holy 
Spirit can give the power. By preaching the 
depravity of human nature ; by proclaiming that the 
heart is desperately wicked, deceitful above all 
things, that there is no difference, for all have sinned ; 
that they that are in the flesh cannot please God ; 
that, except a man be born again, he cannot see the 
kingdom of God, then men may be brought by the 
Holy Spirit to see their utterly lost and ruined 
condition: then there is no fear of their apparent 
conversion being a mere passing whim. On the 
other hand, by urging beyond measure the duty of 
living morally, men may satisfy themselves by mere 
moral reformation. 

You see, when a man is really converted, being a 
new creature in Christ, ' he that is born of God 
doth not commit sin.' The new birth is such a 
reality that it must produce fruit. A good tree 
cannot bring forth evil fruit. The new heart must 
bring forth good things. If we declare these most 


unacceptable facts of man's ruin, and God's hatred 
and wrath against sin, and certain and awful punish- 
ment of it — emphasizing its awfulness by teaching 
that without shedding of blood is no remission. 

What can wash away my stain ? 

Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
What can make me whole again ? 

Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
Nothing can for sin atone, 

Nothing but the blood of Jesus. 
Nought of good that I have done 
(or am doing — such as repentance, prayer, faith — or will do) 

Nothing" but the blood of Jesus. 

Once a man sees the awful danger from which 
he has been rescued, he won't see how close he can 
get to the precipice without tumbling over. He will 
hate that which so nearly ruined him, and which 
crucified his Saviour — sin and the Devil. 

Repentance {fxeTupoia) means a change of mind, 
and doesn't imply sorrow of necessity, true sorrow 
for sin cannot come, I believe, till after conversion. 
Regret for its evil effects is quite possible ; but 
sorrow, because God hates sin, is impossible till our 
heart feels the same holy impulses as God. 

Repentance is as much — or a great deal more — 
an action as a feeling — it is an entire turning away 
from sin (perhaps only mentally, but still an active 
thing), because first, sin is deadly and dangerous, 
and secondly (when converted), because God hates 

To conclude what's been in my mind all through 
this letter, doubt of our own acceptance with God, 


of our everlasting salvation, comes from self- 
righteousness in the garb of humility. It is because 
a man imagines that something in himself is 
necessary to atone for sin, that he doubts whether 
he is saved. I stick to Leviticus xvii. 2. 

' For I have nothing (and never shall) else to plead 
In earth or heaven above 
But just my own exceeding- need 
And His exceeding love.'" 

It will be noticed that reference is made in this 
letter to a time when, as he says : "I was converted, 
but in the dark, as I was for a year at least." This 
probably means that he did not at first realise the 
full privileges of the Christian life, nor the responsi- 
bilities which it entails. 

Towards the latter part of his time at Cambridge, 
he entered into all kinds of Christian work, besides 
that of a Sunday School teacher in the Jesus Lane 
Sunday School, and especially helping in various 
ways at Christchurch, Barnwell. 

Probably his first experience of special Mission 
work was in connection with the Navvy Mission, 
and an account of this is given by the Rev. H. J. 
Molony. He writes: ''In the Easter vacation, 
1887, Pilkington came with me to conduct a Navvy 
Mission in Yorkshire. I had had a meeting in my 
rooms at College, addressed by Mrs. Garnett, at 
which he was present, and, needing a companion 
in the work, I asked him to join me and he 
agreed. We stayed about a week in a farm-house at 
Skipton, near which a huge reser oir was being 


formed by damming a valley. We worked in the 
mornings and afternoons, he at his classics ; and at 
midday we went out and talked to the men in their 
dinner hour, and, in the evening, we held Mission 
services in a small hall in the village, or another on 
the works. My memory of him at that time is that 
he wished to learn, and would not take a leading 
part, but he gave addresses which were of an 
argumentative evangelistic character. 

We had one very definite conversion in the case 
of a lad named Billy, who decided for Christ as we 
were walking home one evening. We knelt down 
and prayed with him in the lane, and he gave his 
heart to God. He was afterwards an earnest and 
consistent Christian." 

During the next term, which was his Tripos term, 
he took part in the' open-air meetings, which were 
held chiefly by undergraduates in various parts of 
Cambridge, and, towards the end of that term, it 
was laid on his heart to hold some Gospel Meetings 
in the neighbourhood of his own home. The letters 
which he wrote to Mr., now Dean Dowse on that 
occasion show so well the humble spirit in which he 
sought to undertake such work, that we give them 
in extenso : — 

" Pembroke College, 


June 3rd, 1S87. 
My dear Mr. Dowse, — 

A number of Cambridge men have, this 
year, been holding open-air Evangelistic Meetings 
on Sunday evenings in various parts of Cambridge 


— in particular, several men of my own College 
(Pembroke)— about twenty — including our Dean, 
have been working in this way, with the approval 
and help of the Vicar of the parish where we hold 
our meetings. Having seen something of the 
blessing which can come by means of such work, it 
has occurred to me that it might be possible to do 
something of the kind in your parish next summer. 
Of course, the first thing necessary would be your 
sanction and co-operation. That is the reason of my 
writing. I believe I could get several Cambridge 
men to come over and stop at Tore, in the Summer 
or Autumn, and take part in the work. We should 
address ourselves to all, without distinction of creed, 
who chose to listen, who do not know Christ as 
their Saviour. Of course, I cannot promise that the 
men would come, and I consider it wiser to ask your 
opinion before definitely writing to them; in case of 
your approval, my next step would be to consult my 
father, who knows and approves of our work here. 
Therefore you need not write to him, or speak to my 
people, before you let me know what you think 

I cannot believe that we can be justified in 
hiding God's blessing from those about us by our 
silence ; and, in our poor country, how much less, 
when the knowledge of Christ is shared by so few ? 

Hoping to hear from you soon, 

I am. 

Yours very sincerely, 

George L. Pilkington,' 


" Pembroke College, 


Jmie 8th, 1887. 

My Dear Mr. Dowse, — 

I am very thankful for your letter. So 
far, the way is made plain before us. I can answer 
for myself and, I think, for any men I ask to come, 
that we shall do all in entire dependence upon God, 
knowing our own utter inability, and that only so 
can our weakness be made strong ; we shall, I trust, 
do nothing but lift up Christ, remembering the 
promise, and I hope that everything may be done in 
a way suitable to our solemn Mission, and so 
' decently and in order.' We shall, I think I may 
promise, conform ourselves to your wishes, as is 
only right. I do not yet know whether obstacles 
may not arise; but I am confident th^t all will be 
for the best. We shall have done our part : the 
rest will be in other hands ; so, be the results what 
they may, we shall be satisfied. Let us all, in the 
meantime, give ourselves to earnest prayer that God 
may both direct and bless the whole undertaking. 

Believe me, 

My dear Mr. Dowse, 

Gratefully and sincerely yours, 

George L. Pilkington." 

It is, perhaps, not to be wondered at that, at this 
time, there was a tendency for him to despise the 
acquirements of mere knowledge, just as, before, he 
had probably unduly exalted it. ^ For a time, feeling^ 
that he had neglected the study of his Bible, he ' 


thought that he should read the Bible to the exclu- 
sion of all other books. And he even contemplated 
abandoning his Tripos and going abroad as a 

~^ Of this time, his mother writes : " It appeared to 
me at that time that his whole mind was absorbed in 
the one thought — his sins were forgiven — he did not, 
for the time, see that anything else w^as worth 
knowing. He felt, I suppose, that he had not 
arrived at this knowledge by any intellectual process, 
and so, got to think intellect of little consequence, 
and regarded the years spent in learning Latin and 
Greek as absolutely wasted, I tried to make him see 
that all knowledge was the knowledge of God, that 
' knowledge rich and varied, digested and combined, 
and pervaded thro' and thro' with the light of the 
Spirit of God,' is what it becomes a Christian man 
to have. He could not for a long time see it, and 
it was, I believe, only in deference to our wishes, 
that he continued to work for his Degree." Having 
decided to do so, he steadily worked on for the 
Classical Tripos, and, in the end, came out in the 
second division of the first class in the memorable 
year when Miss Ramsey (now Mrs. Butler) was 
Senior Classic, being the only one in the first 

During the Summer, the Meetings about which he 
had written to Mr. Dowse, were held at Tyrrell's 
Pass, Mr. Murray Webb-Peploe, who was present 
and assisted in the services, writes as follows : — 

"In organising our meetings, we were advised 
not to have open-air services on the village green 


as we proposed, so our efforts were confined to 
evening meetings in the Hall next the Church, and 
to personally visiting as many individuals as we 
coald. The Rector, Mr. Dowse, was very kind 
to us, and, if I remember rightly, took the chair for 
us at more than one meeting. The attendances 
were very good, but we were told that numbers 
of the Roman Catholics, forbidden of course to 
attend the meetings, used to listen outside in the 
darkness, and so we arranged accordingly for open 
windows and a loud voice when speaking. But it 
was in visiting from house to house that dear old 
Pilkington shone to my mind. He knew and 
seemed to understand the people, and nothing 
hindered him from witnessing faithfully to the 
consequences of sin, and the love and power of Christ 
to redeem. 

He always had a word in season ready, owing, no 
doubt, to his continuing instant in prayer, and living 
in conscious nearness to Christ." 

Mr. Hyslop, who was a friend of Pilkington's 
during the latter part of his Cambridge career, 
writes of him as follows : — 

" To the outward eye, ' Pilks,' — as w^e used to call 
him — was then much what he appeared to those 
who saw him during the last years. I can recall in 
my mind's eye the tall, stalwart figure, the square 
head, the broad brow, the brilliant complexion, 
and the somewhat feminine parting in the middle 
of his hair. I cannot remember that he showed any 
marked vein of humour, such as one had a right 
to expect from his Irish nature. But he certainly 


used to cause his University friends much amuse- 
ment by his spirited advocacy of all articles of 
apparel made on the Jaegar principle. He would 
show us with delight his patent ventilated Jaegar 
boots, and explain their advantages ; and in many 
a trudge through country lanes have I accom- 
panied him when he was testing the same Jaeger 
boots for their African travels." 

During the long vacation of 1887, he was at 
Cambridge for a short time, reading Theology. He 
was a member of a class of a few men who were 
studying the Greek Testament with the Rev. C. H. 
Prior, of Pembroke College. Mr. Prior remembers 
very clearly Pilkington's unwillingness to accept any- 
thing conventional in the way of interpretation. It 
is interesting to note here what Mr. Prior has men- 
tioned Pilkington's great loyalty to Edward Thring, 
his old Headmaster, whom he regarded as a hero. 

He was up at Cambridge for another term, and 
many hoped that he would go on and read for the 
Theological Tripos ; among others, Mr. Boutflower 
tried to persuade him to do this. He writes : '' I 
remember urging him, with his brains, to stay on a 
year at Cambridge and read Theology. He asked 
me if I considered Moody a good Theologian. I 
said I didn't think he had a right to expect God's 
blessing unless he made himself a better one. But 
nothing would shake his view that he should be 
content if he could do Moody's work with Moody's 

He held to this view at that time, and at 
Christmas, 1887, he finally left Cambridge. 



Few men leaving Cambridge have had better 
prospects of a brilHant career than those which 
presented themselves to George Pilkington. His 
friends and relations hoped that he would become 
a distinguished schoolmaster, or that in some similar 
way he would make use of the powers which he 
possessed, and which had been so successfully put 
to the test at Cambridge. 

No better indication of his abilities can be gained 
than by quoting some of the testimonials given to 
him when applying for a mastership soon after 
leaving the University. 

Mr. R. A. Neil, Fellow and Classical Lecturer at 
Pembroke College, Cambridge, writes of him: *' His 
course here was marked by a steady and continuous 
improvement in scholarship, which is, I think, un- 
exampled in my experience. This improvement was 
naturally due to an honest and intelligent devotion 
to work, and was fitly rewarded by a place in the 
highest division of the Classical Tripos of his year 
in which men were placed. His place was well 


deserved, and forms a sufficient guarantee of his 
capacity to undertake high school work. I beheve 
his scholarship will be supplemented by a very high 
interest in his pupils, and that, if he is appointed to 
a mastership, he will have the success to be expected 
from the combination of most creditable attainments 
with a high and vigorous personal character." 

At the same time, Dr. Verrall, Fellow and 
Assistant Tutor at Trinity College, Cambridge, 
writes : '' Mr. G. L. Pilkington, B.A., was my pupil 
at Pembroke College during a considerable part of 
his course as an undergraduate. He is a good 
scholar both in Greek and in Latin. His com- 
position was always correct and sensible, and 
improved steadily with time. Before he went up 
for his degree it had become often brilliant, and 
I quite anticipated for him the high degree which 
he actually obtained. 

All I heard and saw of him was to his advantage, 
and I have much pleasure in recommending him for 
employment as a schoolmaster, an occupation for 
which I believe him to be thoroughly fit." 
I That he would have been fitted for the work of a 
schoolmaster, his subsequent experience abundantly 
showed, but there had already come into his life a 
conviction which he recognised as the call of God 
leading him to devote himself to Foreign Missionary 

Some thoughts of this came to him, as we have 
already seen, before taking his degree, but it was 
during his last term at Cambridge that he first 
offered himself for the work. The Mission to which 


he made application was the China Inland Mission, 
whose work had been prominently brought to the 
front through the visit of *'The Cambridge Seven." 
When asked as to the reasons which led him to 
offer, he answered in the following way : " Because 
I believe it to be God's will, and I think this 
because the need abroad is great ; we have a sort of 
plethora at home, and I am free to go, and Mark 
xvi., 15. The need of Missions has come before me 
urgently for a year." At the same time, he wrote 
to his parents asking for their consent. In reply, 
his father urged a delay of at least two years before 
deciding such an important matter, and in conse- 
quence, although George was accepted by the 
authorities of the China Inland Mission, he 
altogether abandoned his project, saying, " What 
such a man as my father does not wholly approve of, 
cannot be right for me to do." Thus, for the time 
he gave up his cherished plans and set himself to 
whatever his hand found to do at home. 

One more honour came to him, after leaving the 
University, in the shape of the Winchester Reading 
Prize, for which he was bracketted first with another 

During 1888, he was chiefly occupied in Mission 
work amongst boys, in connection with the Children's 
Special Service Mission. 

Missions held by him, in co-operation with other 
University men, at Newcastle and at Clifton are 
specially remembered. 

One who heard him as a boy at Newcastle, and who 
from that time became a fast friend of Pilkington's, 



writes thus of him : " It was his utter manHness 
that first struck me : here was a thorough man 
ringing true from top to bottom. Then that he was 
a man of God : one who knew God and beheved in 
God. So he was a man of power. How well I 
remember my first glimpse of him, eleven years ago, 
as he came swinging round the corner — the great, 
tall, strapping figure ; the beaming face — almost as 
red as his scarlet tie — his hat far enough back to 
show his broad forehead ; a huge, calf-skin Bible 
; under his arm, and a club of a walking stick in his 
r I hand. I never saw him without that Bible ! But, 

alas ! a Uganda calf ate it all but a few pages of 

He also visited Durham and held Meetings at 
the Grammar School, and, at the same time, some 
Meetings for young men. One young man, brought 
to Christ through his instrumentality, wished to 
follow him to Uganda, but, being prevented on 
medical grounds, is now working in connection 
with the Irish Church Missions. Of his Clifton 
Missions the Rev. J.T. Inskip gives us the following 
reminiscences : — 

" In July, 1888, Pilkington came to Clifton with 
Murray Webb-Peploe for two weeks' work. The 
meetings were held in a private house in a central 
position, near Clifton College. The results were, 
speaking frankly, very disappointing. The time 
fixed was unfortunate, as all boys, of the class for 
whom the Mission was intended, were at school. 
On Sundays, the meetings were very large, but, on 
week days, very few boys attended. On the second 


Sunday morning, Pilkington arranged an Open-air 
Service on the Downs. He knew that a large 
number of the College boys would be within reach 
after their service in the School Chapel, and he 
hoped to attract some to this service. I had then 
not long left the College, and, unhappily, courage 
failed me and I did not attend the service, but 
Pilkington and several of the workers persevered. 
He was not discouraged by the apparent failure of 
the Mission. He saw that there was a grand 
opening in Clifton, and promised to come again in 
the following January. In the opening days of 
1889, he began work aided by a band of young men. 
Meetings were held every morning at the same 
private house, in the afternoon football was played 
on the Downs, and, in the evening. Drawing Room 
Meetings were held by invitation. Boys flocked to 
the Alission this time and the impression made was 
deep and widespread. I can see him now — his tall, 
upright figure, his solemn face, standing out against 
the background of dark wall-paper in the meeting 
room at Worcester Lodge. Some of his anecdotes 
and illustrations are still fresh in one's memory. He 
told the boys how useless it was, and how wearying, 
to tie fruit on a fruitless tree — the nature of the 
tree must be changed. He described himself as 
being not the same person since his conversion — in 
fact, as almost literally someone else, a new 
creation. He stated that he had very little 
conviction of sin at his conversion, but that he had 
since found out more and more what sin really was. 
And, in the afternoons, how heartily Pilkington threw 


himself into the games. One dreary Saturday 
afternoon, there was a run to Wick — a village 
between Mangotsfield and Bath. The way was 
unfamiliar and fog came, and some of the runners 
began to lose heart. But Pilkington was in the 
best of trim, and carried one or two boys in turn 
on his back, breathing perseverance into the spirits 
of all, till at length a hospitable reception and a 
hearty meal at Wick Vicarage put everyone to 
rights. All too soon the mission ended, but not a 
few will bear through life the impress of Pilkington's 
influence under the blessing of God. Some few 
who took part, as boys or workers, have been called 
away, one worker (S. W. Day) being killed by an 
accident when riding only a month after Pilkington's 
death. The majority are now scattered over the 
world. But none will forget the happy weeks 
spent together under Pilkington's leadership, 
or the quietness and confidence which were his 

Rev. Murray Webb Peploe, writing of the first 
Clifton Mission, says: — "At Clifton, there were 
some five of us Cambridge men taking part in the 
mission to the Schoolboys, but, to my own mind, 
Pilkington was a head and shoulders above us all 
in his power of speaking to boys. This capability 
he proved himself to possess either in addressing 
boys publicly or in speaking privately to them 
alone. His common sense, manly, straight talks 
were the very thing for boys. He was, as I 
remember him, like a big, simple boy himself, and 
as he had a special love for boys, I do not doubt but 


that he helped many a lad to clearly understand the 
way of life and salvation." 

During the time that he was working as Assistant 
Secretary of the Children's Special Service Mission 
he was associated with Mr. Martin Hall who was, 
in after years, his colleague in Uganda. 

As has been already stated, Pilkington felt most 
at home when he was addressing boys, and Mr. 
Murray Webb-Peploe adds : " Girls were never in 
his line at all ; " consequently, as he did not find 
sufficient opportunities for mission work amongst 
the boys alone, he turned his thoughts once more to 

He spent a few days at Dover College, towards 
the end of 1888, and, of his time, there a corres- 
pondent writes to the Morning Leader : " He was a 
first-rate classical scholar, at once precise and 
deeply read, almost too much so for school pur- 
poses. A splendid figure of a man — well over six 
feet, and broad in proportion — he brought into the 
schoolroom the imperturbable sweetness of temper 
and childlike simplicity — in short, the Christianity 
— that marked his whole life. 

His earnest recognition of such things as services 
in chapel that boys are only too prone to scamp, 
the lonely, walks, spent in serious converse, that he 
would take with one or two members of his class 
who particularly interested him, were thought 
lightly of at the time. Perhaps they had a more per- 
manent effect for good than the Greek verbs that Mr. 
Pilkington taught with such conspicuous ability."' 

One of these boys, now Rev. E. H. Elwin 


Acting-Principal of Fourah Bay College, Sierra 
Leone, writes of this time : " Pilkington was the 
first man I remember to speak of Christ to me 
when a boy at Dover College. He came to take 
the Sixth, when our Headmaster was ill, in 
November, 1888, and I well remember him taking 
me to his rooms and asking me to read a paper 
pinned to the wall. To my surprise, I read John 
iii. 16. He then asked me if I knew the verse, and 
how glad he was that I did in some degree. He 
stayed with us at the College for twenty days, and, 
throughout that time, kept asking boys to his rooms 
to tea, and sought to win them for Christ. I 
remember what a lift I got during those days, and, 
after nearly eight years, with what pleasure he heard 
he had been a help when I reminded him at Oxford, 
about it just before he last sailed for Uganda." 

The summer term of 1889 found him taking 
temporary duty as a master at Harrow School, and, 
of this period, Mr. Hyslop says : — " he seemed 
thoroughly to enjoy his work amongst the boys, and 
I can remember well his telling me of the various 
expedients by which he tried to make his boys 
reahse that 'life is earnest,' and to point them 
onward and upward to the service of his Divine 
Master. It is clear that he must have spoken to 
them *in season and out of season,' and I think of 
this as one more proof of his whole-heartedness 
and devotion to the work of God." 

The Rev. W. D. Bushell, one of the senior 
masters at Harrow, who knew Pilkington intimately, 
speaks of him as one "who loved the school with 


singular affection from the first day he knew it to 
the end " ; and certainly his correspondence bears 
witness to the very warm place which Harrow 
always held in his heart. After Pilkington's death, 
Mr. Bushell was entrusted with the following 
message which was conveyed to the boys from the 
chapel pulpit : *' Whilst he was at Harrow, it 
happened, by the providence of God, that he was led 
to think of the possibility of sudden, early death ; 
he had no fear of it, nor reason to expect it, then, 
but he wrote down these simple words to leave 
behind him : ' If I die here, tell the Harrow boys, 
especially those of my own form, I sent this 
message to them : 'Come to Jesus.' " 

It is not to be wondered at that Pilkington's 
plain and faithful dealings with the boys committed 
to his charge formed the subject of a certain 
amount of criticism ; he would have been the last 
to claim infallibility of judgment ; but there is no 
question that many, who were boys under him, will 
rise up to call him blessed. 

The chief reason of his success was undoubtedly 
the thoroughness and reality of his whole life. If he 
spoke to the boys about their souls, it was not 
merely to satisfy his conscience ; his whole heart 
was in it, and his life so bound up with those 
amongst whom he was working, that their joys 
were his joys, their sorrows his sorrows. His 
mother recalls how, one day, he came home with the 
news that some boy in whom he was interested had 
gone wrong, and says that he felt it so keenly that 
he sobbed like a child. 


On another occasion, he writes home to his sister 
telHng the good news of two brothers who he had 
reason to beheve had been helped by one of his 
missions. He writes:—'' the younger one in 
particular sees everything in a new light — he 
never saw before that eternal life was a gift; he 
sees it clearly and with wonder now — thank God ; 
moreover, he intends to stand up at school for 
Jesus ; do pray for him, for he will have a hard time ; 
he has announced that he intends to start by 
burning his cribs. — Pray for him and his brother." 

On leaving Harrow, in the summer of 1889, he 
had in contemplation the possibility of acting as 
Classical Lecturer in Melbourne University. One of 
his testimonials was from Mr. Welldon, who wrote 
as follows: "Mr. G. L. Pilkington, who is a 
candidate for a Classical Lectureship in Trinity 
College of the Melbourne University, is known to 
me as a man of exceptionally strong physique, of 
high scholarship and of Christian conviction and 
character. If I may base an opinion upon the 
printed list of qualifications for that responsible 
post, I should say it would be hard to find a Lecturer 
who could render more efficient service to the 
College than Mr. Pilkington. He was my colleague, 
at Harrow, for one term, so I have some direct 
knowledge of his work. I have a sincere respect 
for him and should be glad to hear of the success 
of his present application. 

J. E. C. Welldon, 

Head Master of Harrow School." 
Sept. 1 2th, 1889. 


But a wider sphere of usefulness was to open 
before him than a lectureship in Melbourne 
University, and it was in November, 1889, when he 
was acting as an assistant master at Bedford 
Grammar School, that the call to Africa came to 

In order to understand this aright, some reference 
must be made to the plans before the Church 
Missionary Society, at this time, for extension in 
East and West Africa. 

Mr. Douglas Hooper had returned from East 
Africa, and Mr. Graham Wilmot Brooke, and Rev. 
J. A. Robinson, from West Africa, and, in each case, 
proposals had been made for an advance on some- 
what more simple lines than had hitherto been 
deemed possible, at the same time great stress was 
laid upon the importance of securing a small band 
of University men to act as a pioneering party. 

Having gained the Committee's assent to his 
proposals, Douglas Hooper set to work to find 
companions to join him, and the account of his 
stay at Cambridge may be given in his own words. 
He writes : — 

*' After four years in Africa, I went home and had 
the great privilege of being at Ridley Hall again. 
Very many were the talks enjoyed there with men 
as to Man's claim on God and God's claim on Man, 
and one day, Ernest Causton, now working at 
Narowal, said: 'The doctors will not let me go 
with you, but I know someone who might, he is 
now a master at Bedford ; next Sunday he will be 
my guest here and I will bring him to call on you,' 


and so I met George Pilkington, and he told me 
his sympathies were with the China Inland Mission. 
Sometime before, he had wanted to go out in 
connection with that Society, but his parents had 
asked him to drop the matter for two years. He 
was struck with the fact of this time being just up. 
Ttold him I believed the C.I.M. offered him nothing 
that he might not enjoy in the C.M.S. My 
sympathies were then, and are now, very much with 
the C.I.M., and I venture to think that the 
missionary cause owes no living man more under 
God than the beloved and honoured Mr. Hudson 
Taylor. But, at Cambridge, there was a feeling that 
the more deeply spiritually taught men must join 
the C.I.M. in preference to the C.M.S., and one 
tried to disabuse minds on the subject. [From the 
\ ffirst Sunday, Pilkington never seemed to doubt once 
^''n^hat God had called him to Africa.^ The idea was 
that a few of us (the C.M.S. limited us to four) 
should go to Ulu and live together in as simple a 
way as possible. The people there were many, the 
district healthy, and the food plentiful ; but it was 
not to be, for, shortly before leaving, Mr. Wigram 
asked one and all to go to Uganda. Mackay was 
pleading for reinforcements." 

Thus the call came, and there seemed to be no 
doubt about it, but, before he would give a final 
answer, he determined to put the whole matter 
before his parents. He had heard God's voice 
before, as he believed, speaking to him through 
them ; he believed it would be the same again ; 
accordingly he wrote to his father as follows : — 


" Pembroke College, 

Sunday, 3rd Nov., 1889. 

My Dear Father, — 

I have a very important matter to write 
to you about, to-day. I hope we shall all be able to 
see it in the same light ; at any rate, I am not 
making the mistake of not first writing to you and 
Mother about my plans, before taking any step or 
speaking to other people with regard to them. 

Douglas Hooper (an old Harrovian and Trinity 
Hall man) has come home, some months ago, from 
Africa, where he has been working under the 
Church Missionary Society for four years. 

He has come back with a new plan of work on 
the East of Africa, which he has laid before the 
Church Missionary Society, and which they have 
accepted and promised to supply the necessaries for, 
if he can find the men. It is to take five or six 
Cambridge men and make a station on a new route 
to the Victoria Nyanza, between Frere Town and 
the Lake : on the principle of living as simply and 
as much in native style as is possible. There are 
four points in his plan on which he lays stress : — 

(i.) Not less than five or six men. — The deaden- 
ing effect of heathendom is such that isolated men 
succumb to it. 

(2.) Cambridge men. — Experience has convinced 
him that educated gentlemen are absolutely needed 
for Africa. 

(3.) A new route. — Virgin soil — because, on the 
old routes, the natives are so habituated to the old 


system of buying the chiefs' favour by innumerable 
presents, that those who go on another princ iple are 
not tolerated. 

(4.) Native style. — As far cheaper and healthier 
— so he says by experience — and also as the right 
way of getting into touch with the natives. 

This is the plan : he has with difficulty succeeded, 
after some months, in getting three men besides 
himself; no others seem forthcoming: he considers it 
wrong to go unless four at least go with him. Most 
men have ties and engagements which make it im- 
possible, had they the mind, to go. How about 
myself? If no one comes forward during the next 
week or two — he wants to start in January — he will 
give up the plan, and the East Coast will have to 
be given up to darkness still, for we know not how 
long, till another opening like the present occurs. 
Mr. Wigram, secretary of the C.M.S., told him that 
the Society's prospects never looked brighter than 
they do at present in Africa : but what if this 
attempt be given up ? What do you say ? It 
probably lies between you and Mother and me 
whether it will be carried out or no. 

May I point out some of the advantages ? I 
know you would like me to go out with the C.M.S. 
rather than, as might happen, independently, or 
with an undenominational Society. I am sure you 
would be glad that five or six of us should be 
standing together and helping one another to hold 
fast by God rather than singly, or in twos, or even 
threes. Again, the climate is not unhealthy for 
Africa, as the proposed country is high. I know 


how much you and Mother wish me to be a school- 
master, but you would, I know, only wish me to 
be a good schoolmaster; and, when the mind is 
distracted even by a mistaken idea of duty, it is not 
possible to produce good work. Supposing then, 
for argument's sake, that I am best suited for a 
master, even so, would it not be better that I should 
be a good missionary {i.e., a missionary with his 
whole heart in it) rather than a half-hearted and 
dissatisfied schoolmaster — or, if unsuited to be a 
missionary, should convince myself thereof in the 
only efficacious, if unpleasant manner, by a sad 
experience ? Neither you, nor Mother, nor anyone 
else knows how little satisfaction I have had during 
the past two years — a continual, ceaseless, restless 
apprehension, ' You are not where God wants you.' 
Suppose this is a delusion ; the delusion itself is a 
terrible fact which is spoiling my life, preventing 
me from doing anything with all my heart, and 
rendering me more miserable than I can describe ; 
I assure you this is no exaggeration. To get rid of 
this, by buying my own experience at the price of 
all the pain of going out and the humiliation of 
coming back ' a sadder and a wiser man,' even so, it 
would be a cheap bargain. But I don't want you 
to think of my feelings. I want you to consider the 
need — one man, a Cambridge man, is wanted : no 
one is ready to go. How few men there are who 
have so little to keep them at home ; don't mis- 
understand me — in the way of inclination, from 
home happiness and friends and love, who have so 
much — but in the way of duty ? No one dependent 


on me ; no one whom I should leave, who would not 
have more than one to take my place: and the 
blessings with which God has surrounded me, 
though making it harder to go, ought, from grati- 
tude, to be my greatest incentives, if He wants me 

I have said all I can say, and I can only pray 
that God will guide us all to see and to do His 
Will, which who yet regretted having done ? 
Your loving Son, 

George L. Pilkington.' 

Two days later, he writes to his mother : — 

"Tuesday, 5th November, 1889. 

Dearest Mother, — 

. . . I am wondering how circumstances 
will strike you and Father and all ; just two years 
ago, if you remember, you said, ' Wait two years.' 
I engaged up to, but not beyond, the time when 
it is proposed to start. Harrow left, from which, 
perhaps, God knew I would not have torn myself 
away to Africa ; my mind for two years in this 
unsettled condition ; my daily and hourly longing 
' Only to know that the path I tread is the path 
marked out by Thee.' 

You don't know how I long for that knowledge : 
I believe I should be satisfied to black boots if I 
knew that was 'the right way,' by which the Lord 
was leading me. Now, if all these coincidences 
with the definite need of a definite sort of man for a 
definite work (which, unless I go, will — I may say — 


be abandoned) ; if they strike you all at home with 
the conviction that the Lord has called your son, 
then the last doubt will have gone, and I will have 
the answer to my prayer for definite and clear 
guidance ; to stay at home or to go abroad — mind, 
I've not asked for guidance to go abroad — but clear 
guidance one way, that I might knoWj and so DO 
with a whole heart. 

" Indeed, if unuttered wishes are prayers, I've 
prayed to be allowed to stay at home. Anyhow, 
dearest Mother, don't be unhappy ; if I ^o go, it will 
only be in the perfect certainty that this is my 
* vocation,' in which case, what an honour to be the 
King's ambassador — and if I stay at home — all right 

Your loving son, 


On receiving George's letter, Mr. Pilkington said 
to Mrs. Pilkington, " God has asked for him, and we 
must give him," and from that time every help and 
encouragement was given to their son as he 
prepared to go forth to his unknown work in Dark 
Africa. The following is George's reply : — 

"54 Midland Road, Bedford, 

Wednesday, 6th Nov., 1889. 

Dearest Mother, — 

Thank you so much for your letter, and 
Father for his. I am glad to have the way marked 
so clearly now. Not a sorrow, indeed, dearest 
Mother ; and I'm sure we'll all see that some day ; 
but, for the present, we walk by faith, not by sight. 


I've telegraphed to Douglas Hooper, whom you 
would like immensely. You'll tell people how much 
one man was wanted to prevent the work falling 

Pray for all of us. One of the men, Cotter, of 
Trinity, who is coming, was at Scarborough last 
summer ; then there's a Corpus man, whose name I 


Your loving son, 

George L. Pilkington." 

Having received his parents' consent, he at once 
entered into communication with the Church 
Missionary Society, and after some preliminary 
correspondence, he wrote as follows to Rev. F. 
Wigram, Hon. Sec. of the C. M. S., especially with 
reference to his call to East Africa. 

54 Midland Road, Bedford, 

Sunday, 17th Nov., 1889. 

My Dear Mr. Wigram, 

Thank }Ou very much for your kind and 
sympathetic letter. May I explain, if at some length, 
what I feel about East Africa ? For two and a 
half years I have felt the overwhelming importance 
of Foreign Missionary work : during the whole of 
that time, I may say, I think, I have not passed an 
hour without wondering whether I ought not to go 
abroad. My prayer has been for distinct and definite 
guidance — ' only to know that the path I tread is the 
path marked out for me.' I undertook school- work 
because, in spite of these strong feelings, I could not 


be certain that I was being called to any special 
foreign work ; but neither could I be sure that 
school- work was ' the right way.' What I longed 
for was certainty that I was going on a path of God's 
choosing, not mine. When Douglas Hooper pro- 
posed East Africa with his party, a fortnight ago, I 
was convinced that my prayer was answered, and 
this conviction was immensely strengthened by the 
cordial assent of, first, my parents, and then of 
many others from whom experience had led me to 
expect at least a mild disapproval. Under these 
circumstances, I feel so sure of God's leading, that 
I not only hope that I may, but firmly believe that 
I shall, be sent to East Africa. 

Believe me, 

Yours very sincerely, 

George L. Pilkington." 

The most remarkable testimony to his fitness for 
missionary work was furnished by the Master of 
Pembroke, who wrote : — 

" I can hardly find words sufficiently strong to 
describe his fitness for the work which, for years, he 
has been anxious to attempt. He has the zeal of an 
Apostle and Evangelist, and, being a highly cultured 
man, will be an enormous accession to the mis- 
sionary cause. I have never had any pupil, who 
has gone out, in my opinion, so qualified spiritually, 
intellectually, and physically. There is the promise 
of a Hannington or a Gordon in him. He must not 
be too much interfered with. Allow him a free hand. 

November 19th, 1889." 


Pilkington's preparation for missionary work was 
different from that which is usually recommended 
for intending missionaries, and, in view of the varied 
character of missionary work, it is worthy of con- 
sideration if it would not be well for some to 
engage in educational work previous to going forth 
to the mission field. It may seem remarkable that 
Pilkington did not seek ordination. On this point, 
the Master of Pembroke, preaching in the College 
Chapel after his death, says : — 

"With many of you it will not detract from his 
praise that he was a layman — that he joined the 
Mission as a layman, and remained as such. I 
never argued with him about his motives, but I 
think I can fathom them. His mind was of that 
independent order that does not easily submit to 
dictation — especially of an absent committee. I 
made a point of this, in writing to the C. M. S., that 
they must not worry him with rules, or attempt too 
much control, and that he would do original things 
if he were unfettered. He was altogether unprofes- 
sional, and you would mistake him if you associate 
any affectation or sanctimoniousness with his 
character and conduct. (A frank, genial Irishman 
he remained to the last, with an overflow of spirit). 
This is different, I know, from some of our concep- 
tions of a modern missionary. 

Being as he was, he can be used as an argument 
for the freer and fuller employment of laymen in the 
Church, which, I am glad to think, is gaining ground 
amongst us. We do not now interpret Christ's 
command to preach the Gospel to all nations to be 


only a clerical obligation, we recognise that His 
Society is of laymen, and we have ceased to describe 
an intending clergyman as ' one who is going into 
the Church.' That is wrong in thought and ex- 

On December 3rd, 1889, George L. Pilkington 
was accepted as a missionary of the Church 
Missionary Society at the same time as Baskerville 
and Cotter, all of whom were destined for Eastern 
Equatorial Africa, Graham Wilmot Brooke and 
Eric Lewis being accepted for the Niger on the 
same day. 

From December 3rd, i88g, to January 23rd, 1890, 
the date when the East African party left London, 
was none too long for the work of outfitting, and 
for taking leave of friends, and other preparations 
for the journey. Since the plans for the East 
African party had first been formulated, news had 
reached England which led to a change in their 
probable destination. The need of reinforcing 
Uganda, now that it seemed possible to reach it, was 
felt to be the primary duty of the new band, and 
they were ready to fall in with the arrangements 
which were made for them, their instructions being 
to proceed to the coast and to wait there until the 
way opened for them to proceed up country. 

The public leave-taking was a most impressive 
occasion, being the first occasion on which Exeter 
Hall had been taken for a valedictory meeting of 
C.M.S. Missionaries. Of this, a correspondent of 
the Church Missionary Intelligencer, now a member 
of the editorial staff, wrote : — 


" It was a bold experiment to engage Exeter Hall 
for a Farewell Meeting to the band of missionaries 
set apart for Africa, but it was a venture more than 
justified by its success. On the evening of January 
20th, the doors were besieged as at the Annual 
Meeting of the Society, and, when they were thrown 
open, the crowd surged into the great hall. Many 
of the features of an Annual Meeting of even more 
than usual interest were there — the room full to the 
back of the gallery and the furthest corner of the 
great platform ; gangways crowded with people 
unable to obtain seats ; and well-known faces to be 
seen on every side. We were especially pleased to 
welcome representatives of other Missions, such as 
Mr. James Mathieson, Mr. Hudson Taylor, and Dr. 
Pierson of Philadelphia ; and also sixty Cambridge 
undergraduates, who had come up in a body with 
Mr. and Mrs. Moule. 

One is led to ask what was the immediate cause 
of all this interest. The explanation is to be found 
in the striking character of the missionaries on the 
platform. In Bishop Crowther, we have the only 
non-European bishop that has been consecrated 
since the days of the early Church, and a man whose 
romantic career and long services will always com- 
mand the public attention. In some of the younger 
missionaries, we have men of marked individuality, 
of great ability, and of still greater devotion. And 
the novelty and danger of their plans have attracted 
the liveliest interest of all friends of Missions." 

There were no long speeches at this meeting, but 
each of the male members of the two missionary 


parties proceeding to East and West Africa, rose, one 
after another, and either told of the works in which 
they had already taken part, or asked for prayer as 
they went forth for the first time. 

After the President of the C.M.S., Sir John 
Ken n away, had spoken, followed by the Rev. H. C. 
G. Moule, Bishop Crowther addressed the meeting, 
and, after him, Mr. Graham Wilmot Brooke, the 
Rev. Eric Lewis, and Dr. C. F. Harford-Battersby, 
proceeding to the Upper Niger with a view to 
reaching the Sudan; the Rev. F. N. Eden, the 
Rev. H. H. Dobinson, and Mr. P. A. Bennett, 
appointed to the Lower Niger; and the Rev. H. 
Tugwell, now Bishop Tugwell, located to Lagos. 
This formed the West African contingent. The 
East African party followed, consisting of Mr. 
Douglas Hooper, Mr. G. L. Pilkington, Mr. G. K. 
Baskerville, and Mr. J. D. M. Cotter. 

Mr. G. L. Pilkington said he was going out 
because he knew the Lord had saved him, and that | 
nothing could separate him from the love of Christ ; ! 
because the Lord's command was laid upon him ; i 
and because, since He is King, we have but to do ! 
His will and we shall be safe. He had been kept, | 
he said, ' with a light heart,' not that he was going 
lightly, for he had never given anything such care- 
ful consideration. He urged upon those present to 
forestall the coming of Christ by accepting His 
salvation and by doing Him service." 

A little incident connected with this meeting is 
recorded by a friend of his, the Rev. R. S. Heywood, 
now a Missionary in India. Mr. Heywood writes : 


" At his first dismissal meeting at Exeter Hall, a 
number of us went up from Cambridge, and I was 
glad to come across him at the bottom of the stairs 
at the Hall, so as to have a last chat. As we stood 
there, I noticed several people going up and looking 
with great interest at him, some evidently pointing 
him out to others. I mentioned this to him, and at 
once, with an exclamation Of distress, he asked me 
to move with him into a more remote corner, where 
he would not be conspicuous. This was only one 
instance of the humility which all my acquaintance 
with him showed was most truly genuine." 

The last night in England was spent under the 
hospitable roof of the Rev. W. D. Bushell. From 
there, he wrote to his mother as follows : — 

" I am just beginning this letter before going to 
bed to-night, to finish it in the morning. I can only 
praise God for His goodness to me during the last 
few days. He has been so with me both here and 
in Cambridge. We had 3,000 in Exeter Hall, more 
than 50 men came up from Cambridge." 

Next morning he writes : *' Bushell has given me 
a pedometer and several other things — he is kind. 
It's all right. I've never doubted that this is the 
way (Rom. viii. 28)." 

On the same day, January 23rd, 1890, the East 
African party left London in the s.s. ''Kaparthala," 
and, after an uneventful voyage, reached Frere Town 
where they were to wait till arrangements could be 
made for them to proceed to Uganda. 



Not long after arriving at Frere Town, finding 
that there must be considerable delay before starting 
tor Uganda, Pilkington accompanied Mr. Binns on 
a journey to the neighbourhood of Kilimanjaro, of 
which he gives the following description : — 

"Taro, E.E. Africa, 

(Half-way from Mombasa to Taita), 
Sunday, April 20th, 1 890. 

Seated on a box, with two other boxes for a 
table, our porters squatting or standing all round, 
just finishing their breakfast of rice and dried fish, 
Mr. Binns, Secretary of the C.M.S. for the Coast 
districts, writing beside me on our only little table, 
ten o'clock this Sunday morning, I am answering 
your letters. 

I want to write a letter which will give you 
some idea of what an African Safari is like, and so 
I write to \'ou only, but, of course, you will show it 
to the rest. If I tried to write a lot of letters, none 
would be satisfactory. I am keeping a diarv, to 
which I shall refer now, and tell you all that has 
happened since I left Frere Town. By the wa\', 

F 65 


Hannington came this way, as he relates in the 20th 
and succeeding chapters of his Hfe. 

We started at 2.30 on Monday from Frere 
Town by boat up the creek, which stretches up a 
dozen miles or so inland. " We " means Mr. Binns 
and his dog Nellie, myself, Edgar and his dog 
Minnie, whose existence I was, till last Sunday, 
ignorant of, but on Monday he, Edgar, presented 
himself with a bit of rope round the animal's neck, 
and fully determined on having this gaunt, half- 
starved, and, to me, specially obnoxious beast as his 
companion to Chagga. 

Miss Ramsay went with us to Rabai, to take 
back Miss Barton to Frere Town next day. 

Our porters were to meet us at Rabai. 

We sailed and towed up the winding creek, 
sometimes as much as a mile broad, but narrowing 
further up between mangrove swamps, and, finally, 
not more than twenty yards across. I had a shot 
at a big water-bird with Binns' gun, but missed. 

We reached the "banderini," or landing place, 
about 5.30, where we waited till the dhow contain- 
ing our loads, i.e., tents, clothes, food, rice for the 
men, should arrive, to be carried up to Rabai by the 
forty men or so whom we found waiting our arrival. 
After a few minutes — during which we drank the 
juice from some " dafu," or young cocoanuts, which 
Binns had brought — we heard the panting of the 
Company's Steam Launch coming up the creek. 
We hoped it would be tugging our dhow, but it was 
not ; it brought Crawfurd of the Company, who, I 
told you, was to go with us to Taita. We left the 


men to bring the loads, hearing that the dhow was 
only just behind, and started on our way to Rabai. 
It was a very good road for Africa, European-made, 
and therefore several feet broad — the native roads 
just like sheep tracks, — it was very pretty, through 
undulating, country ; we saw lots of orchids. We 
reached Rabai, which is four miles distant, about 
6.30. Passing the fine church, which it was almost 
too dark to see, we came to Burness's house, where 
we were kindly received by Mr. Burness and his 
wife. Miss Barton, of Frere Town, was with them 
as I mentioned before. After tea, I went out with 
Burness, but could see nothing for the darkness but 
fire-flies, of which there are thousands. 

Crawfurd had not yet got enough Rabai men to 
supplement his Zanzibaris up to the 100 he wanted, 
so we could not start till the afternoon of Tuesday. 
I walked round Rabai with Binns in the morning ; 
it has a population of 1,500. At Church, in the 
morning at 6.30, there were 300 or so present. 
The native pastor, Jones, is often mentioned b\- 
Hannington. The population consists half of 
Waswahili and half of Wanyika, drawn there (for 
IJinns said he remembered when there were not 
more than fifty or sixty people), by the security of 
property which a European settlement gives (we 
heard of an incursion of Masai only ten miles away 
from Rabai the other day), and, let us hope, some 
perhaps, by the Gospel. It is, at any rate for Africa, 
an important place and market. The Wanyika 
huts are very primitive — from the outside just like a 
small rick of damaged hay — no windows whatever ; 


the Swahili huts are very superior. I saw, in Rabai, 
an India-rubber tree, from which Binns, in a lew 
minutes, by cutting the bark and rubbing the sap on 
his hands, made a Httle piece of india rubber. 

We started at 2.15, and reached Mwachi (seven 
miles) at 4.10. These halting places are not towns 
or villages as a rule, but merely places where water 
is. The water here (which Crawfurd called splendid) 
was like the water in the pond at Tore to look at, 
only covered mostly with green stuff. We boil and 
then filter all our water ; the natives drink it neat. 
We pitched our tents and set up our bedsteads for 
the night. Edgar sleeps on my waterproof sheet in 
my tent ; the men sleep out ; but since that first 
night, when there was heavy rain, they have rigged 
up little tents with sticks and a little cloth or cut 
grass. The first thing on arriving in camp is, for us, 
who have carried nothing heavier than an umbrella 
and a monstrous hat, to rest — for the men, who have 
carried a load of 5olb. to 6olb. (sometimes more), 
generally on their heads, to fetch firewood and 
water. Last night, I counted more than a dozen 
fires round about. The men sleep with feet toward 
them, and they keep off wild beasts. And now to 
make a digression. The contrast will have struck 
you already. The people, to whom we have come to 
preach, lie on the ground or in a reed or grass hut, 
at rice and a bit of dried fish (two cupfuls of 
rice and a handful of dried fish is a day's ration), 
carry a load under a burning sun for ten or 
twelve miles which I should be sorry to carry 
a mile in England, walk barefoot on the 


scorching ground, while we live in grand houses 
or tents (palaces to these people), sleep on beds as 
comfortable as any at home, eat chickens (carried in 
a box alive), preserved meat, green peas (preserved), 
tea, cocoa, biscuits, bread, butter, jam. Necessary 
for health, perhaps, some of these things may be. 
It's all very well for people at home, who know that 
we should have these things and others too, if we 
had stayed at home ; but how are these ignorant 
people to know or to believe that ? They see we 
live like princes (in their eyes) ; they cannot but 
believe that it is for these luxuries we come here : 
they're not luxuries at home, at least, nothing like 
to the same extent. Now my feeling at the present 
moment is that, if it is not possible, or if there is 
not a prospect of its becoming possible, to live ver\ 
differently, we might almost as well be at home. 
Don't think I'm complaining of anything or any- 
one. I enjoy these things and with a clear con- 
science at present : the roast chicken we had the other 
night was very good ! so were the peas ! and I sleep 
on my comfortable bed as well as if I \Nere at home : 
but I stick to what Fnc said, and say what I think. 
It's no good coming out here unless we persuade 
these people (not people at home) that we've come 
out for something that is not for our own comfort, 
nor profit, nor sport ; and, to do so successfully, it 
may be ncccssaiy to do things which would other- 
wise be foolish and wrong. However, don't be 
frightened. I take tremendous care of my health, 
and mean to do so. One more remark about above 
subject — our life ought to be such as to compel the 


natives — not Englishmen — to ask, " What on earth 
brings these fellows out to live like this among us ? 

There is such a gulf between us already — language, 
character, thought, and religion ; it is terrible if it 
is necessary to set up another barrier, a physical 
one, to point all the others out as by an object 
lesson to these children, such children they are, I 
think, and so Irish, so like myself, coming in with 
their loads after a long march, singing and running to 
shew that they're not tired; taking the tool out of the 
w^hite man's hand, when he sets himself to some rough 
work, saying that such is not for the likes of him, an 
acknowledgement of a social distinction which you 
will find in Ireland, but not much in England. 

We were up about five on Wednesday morning ; 
pack all things in great haste, drink cocoa and 
biscuit, and start at 6.40 (a late start — the sun 
always rises at six, and we ought not to start later). 
We reached Mto Kajembe at 9 a.m. (nine miles) ; here 
we had breakfast, pitched tents, slept, etc., till 2.30 
when we started, and reached Mto W^a Munyo (Salt 
River) at a quarter to four (four and three-quarter 
miles). W^e stopped here for the night. I had a 
bath in a portable India-rubber bath, very delightful ; 
we saw a lot of partridges on this and next day ; 
we have also seen several vultures. The general 
appearance of the country is that of an undulating 
(or even hilly) plain, well sprinkled with small trees, 
chiefly mimosa, occasional thick, impenetrable bush 
— the soil is sand}-, covered by coarse grass, as on 
the edge of the bog at home. 

On Thursday, off at 5.50 ; we had not got far 


when the men in front stopped and waited for us to 
come up, as two splendid antelopes, very dark, long, 
straight horns, big as mules, were grazing about 300 
yards ahead. We saw what Binns said was a flowering 
fungus, and very rare. We saw two small antelopes 
at a place called Gora, perhaps mentioned by 
Thomson or Hannington. We reached Samburu at 
8.35, ten and three-quarter miles (all measurements by 
pedometer, given me by Mr. Bushell). On, one and 
three-quarter miles, in the afternoon, to what Thomson 
calls, "the stone reservoirs of Duruma." A Duruma 
man here asked why no Missionaries came among 
them. Three of Crawfurd's Zanzibaris ran off thi 
day ; they had been paid fifteen dollars {£2) in 

Left next day at six ; went on, with an hour for 
breakfast, to this place, Taro, twelve and a quarter 
miles, reaching this before eleven, the day before 
yesterday. We then waited for mails which arrived 
yesterday at 4.30. Forty of Crawfurd's Zanzibaris 
made their escape on this last march ! Seventeen 
loads are missing, stolen by the men ; runaway 
porters generally leave their loads on the road, but 
these, Crawfurd says, are a mere pack of thieves. 
They were engaged for him by a clerk, who got a set 
of boys to begin with, and besides, the riff-raff of 
Zanzibar. His headmen accompanied Stanley on 
the Emin Pasha relief expedition, but he doesn't 
know whether he can trust even them. He lost, 
among other things, some most valuable papers, 
and he is himself now ill with dysentery. The 
mails arrived yesterday, and with them the news 


that Mackay was dead ! Since he went to Uganda 
in 1876, he has never come down to the coast. He 
has left us an example of perseverance. 

Crawford started back this morning, carried by 
four men, in a waterproof sheet slung on poles. 

Now just a word as to my health ; I am thankful 
to say I am perfectly well ; this Safari has cured my 
prickly heat and trilling tropical rash." 

" Freie Town, 

June 17th. 

We went on again on Monday. The next place 
where we were sure of water was forty miles away ; 
so we had to push on. We found some water, as a 
matter of fact, about half-way, but it didn't help us 
much, as we only rested a little time, while the men 
re-filled their gourds, dried, in which they carry 
water. We walked seven-and-a-half hours on 
Monday, and then slept without water, i.e., at a 
place where there was no water, and without tents. 
Off again at 5.20 a.m., still dark, four-and-a-half 
hours' of hard walking, such a crooked road, ending 
up a steep hill ; under a blazing sun, we at last 
reached the hill of Maungu. (I forgot to explain why 
this letter was delayed. Three weeks ago to-day, I 
wrote to Mother ; that evening the doctor sent me 
to bed in high fever, which continued, more or less, 
for a fortnight ; I am thankful to say it is gone now, 
but I am still fearfully weak. We hope to start to- 
morrow week for Zanzibar, en voutc for Uganda. We 
like the four new men very much, and the Bishop 
extremely, which, I expect, I said in my last letter). 

At Maungu, the unfortunate men, after arriving 


some time after us with their heavy loads, had to 
mount the hill for water, a good hour's walk. It is 
a lovely place, a high pass between two hills, \\ itli 
a splendid view, filled with flowers ; convolvulus 
creeps over half the little trees. In the afternoon, 
Binns and I went up to the top, washed (how- 
delightful), and saw a troop of chattering monkeys, 
and — Kilimanjaro's snow\- head, far, far awaw 
Within the last few months, Dr. Meyers, a German, 
has got to the top ; it is almost 20,000 feet high, 
Mont Blanc with Ben Nevis piled above it. 

Next day we reached Taita (Mt. Ndara 6,000 feet 
high), a C. M. S. station, just given up, for the 
present at least. We saw the Missionary (who has 
just left this room, Morris), after that a splendid swim 
and wash, with soap, in a mountain stream, that 
was very full after the rains they had had, and filled 
a fine rocky basin, almost out of my depth. 

Next day, on again, five-and-a-quarter hours' morn- 
ing walk to a populous village — Matali — in a lovely 
and well-cultivated valley ; the afternoon we rested in 
our tents, eating roast Indian-corn cobs and sucking 
sugar cane. The people very friendly. On next 
day, up and around a mountain — lovely \iew of 
Kilimanjaro — and down again into a rich and 
wooded country. Then we started across Seringete, 
the waterless track of fifteen hours' march. How- 
ever, we found a fine pool half-way, where we 
camped. Here, and all this day, we saw animals in 
great numbers — zebra, ostriches, eland, hartebeest, 
vultures, giraffes, and buffaloes — very dangerous 
beasts, (not so many tracks of lions), leopards, 


elephants, rhinoceros, and, of course, hyenas howHng 
every night. We have them here. Quails there 
were in endless numbers, also partridges and guinea- 
fowl. The flowers are often magnificent, but I 
can't describe them, and, except at Maungu, they 
were, as a rule, so scattered that there was nothing 
so fine as a spring or summer field at home. 

Next day, Binns shot an Eland as big as a cow, 
to the men's great delight, for, of course, we could 
eat only a little of it. We had to camp on the spot 
while they cut it up and cooked it, and gorged 
themselves all night long. The cooked, or, rather, 
burnt morsels they disposed of to great advantage (as 
I thought, for I wouldn't have touched it) for splendid 
bunches of bananas and plantains and sugar cane. 
This was at Taveta, a prosperous village below 
Kilimanjaro, hidden in the heart of a great forest. It 
was fine making our w^ay under the great trees, dark- 
ened by creepers (not so dark, perhaps, as Stanley's 
forest), till we came to the " gate" where you have 
to fire off guns and pay so much cloth to get in. 
These great log gates, remind one of Irish 
" gates " on a huge scale. The " gate " consists of a 
huge pile of logs which have slowly to be unheaped 
to let you pass. Then through another forest, this 
time of bananas — a beautiful sight, with the huge 
bunches of fruit hanging down everywhere. We 
spent a pleasant afternoon and morning next day 
buying food and watching the Wataveta. Then 
we started about one, but alas ! some non-Tavetans 
had barred the road by the other gate, they wanted 
cloth ; this was an imposition we considered, so we 


came back, re-crossing three rivers, either on 
sHppery, dangerous planks, or rather round poles, 
at the risk of a wetting, or by wading them. One 
of the '' Elders"' of Taveta, on our return, assured 
us they had no authority at that gate, and advised 
our taking another road. After losing our way, and 
having to come back a good bit— three times I 
think— at last we really started at half-past three. 
We only got two hours on our way and had to 
camp in a bad place, where there was no water. 
Next evening we got within one-and-a-half hours of 
Chagga ; the men, who were behind, thought we had 
pushed right on, and camped on their own account 
We were left with boys, cook and guide, no food, no 
change of clothes, no tents, and it was raining— with 
a fire, indeed, by which we lay— till the cook and 
guide, who had gone back, brought up the men with 
the loads which we wanted. Next day early, we 
reached Chagga." 

The chief object of this journey was to interview 
the King of Chagga, and to bring him, if possible, 
to treat the work of the C.M.S. more favourably. 
Of the interview, and of some further incidents of 
their visit, Mr. Pilkington writes : — 

*'The kingdom of Chagga, where Mundara, the 
one-eyed king, reigns, is a lovely spot on the lower 
ridges of the great, twin-peaked, snow mountain, 
Kilimanjaro. Here we found ourselves in the 
presence of this one-eyed, African despot. 

The contrast was strange :—' The palace,' more 
like a cabin to our eyes : the courtyard, a horrible 
quagmire of filthy mud; and there sat, in a full- 


length shirt — that ought to have been white, but it 
wasn't — Mundara, the dreaded ruler, the ambitious 
conqueror, whose evil fame reaches to the coast. 
And another contrast : so polite he was, his words 
' smoother than oil,' and yet he is the man who has 
exterminated whole tribes ; has depopulated mountain 
sides, killing many of the people, and selling the 
rest into the miseries of slaverx'. This is human 
nature as it is, before it knows Jesus, the Saviour of 
the world. 

Mr. Binns' words had a good effect ; the 
attendance of twenty-one boys at the Mission 
House showed that the king had withdrawn the 
opposition to that extent, at least. He had been 
under the impression that, the boys once taught, 
we should want to carry them off to the coast. 

Most interesting our ' safari ' was : the natives 
were sometimes (as we were told), so superstitious 
that, when our missionaries at Taita went up to the 
top of the mountain for a walk, they were un- 
pleasantly surprised by a crowd of angry men, 
armed with bows and poisoned arrows, who insisted 
that they had gone up there to make " medicine ' 
to keep the rain oif ! The Missionaries' assurances 
were at last belie\-ed, and they w^ere allowed to start 
homeward, followed, however, when they had gone 
a little way, by a shower of arrows. On the other 
hand, at Taveta, that Arcadian paradise as Thomson 
calls it, in the heart of the forest, we found the 
natives so friendly and interesting. Some of the 
customs were so odd : beads and cloth are the 
money of the country — but beads, which are greatly 


prized at Taveta, are just a shade too blue and a 
trifle too large for the fashion at Chagga, where, 
accordingly, they are valueless ! How I wish I had 
had the skill to depict the features of the chief of 
Matati, when Mr. Binns induced him to try his 
bottle of smelling salts ! At this place, too, we 
found a huge demand for common salt ; a few 
spoonfuls would buy three fine sugar canes, each 
ten feet long. In Duruma, nearer home, a man 
asked us why no missionary was among them : 
perhaps he only wished for the temporal advantages 
which come with the white man ; but the question 
stands, why is it ? Because, if five times as many 
men were at work here, they could find work to 
spare in the stations already occupied. 

A few days later we started back; we got drenched 
for the first four days regularly, and had to sit 
waiting once, foodless, fireless, in drenched and muddy 
clothes, lying tired on the wet ground, under a sort 
of improvised arbour to keep out the drizzle, for 
two-and-a-half hours till the men came up, with 
hyenas yowling round. A day or two later, 
one of our boys walked with us all the way, 
down with small-pox, covered with the rash ; 
he has recovered, though one of Binns' bo\'5 
caught it and died here ten days ago. The last of 
the four days on which we got drenched, sitting b}- 
the fire, with the small-pox boy on the other side, I 
reflected on what the Greeks called the ' irony of 
fate,' that in my coat pocket on the same ' safari ' 
should be a letter of Mother's beseeching me to 
take care of my health ; so I do, but — well, I 


shan't describe our return in detail ; we reached 
Rabai, after tremendously hard marching ; on the 
way in, Edgar said to me, * Have you heard the 
news ? ' 

'What news?' said I. 'Mr. Cotter's dead.' 
And so it was, two days before. 

And so I have got here again — to be laid up ten 
days with my foot, and then, just this day three 
weeks ago, by fever ; and I've not been out yet — am 
very weak, but the Doctor says it's all right ; can't 
expect to get up one's strength at once after a sharp 
attack of fever ; and to-morrow week, please God, 
we shall start for Zanzibar on the way to Uganda, 
the change will do me good. 

June 19th. 
We hear this morning that the ship from 
Bombay, by which we expect to travel to Zanzibar, 
will not be here till Friday or Saturday week, 
which gives me two or three days extra to 
mend in. I have just re-read my last mail and 
proceed to answer one or two things. You know 
that not only Hill, of Corpus, but three other men 
whom we like very much, have come out ; they are 
not Cambridge men. By the way, you say in one 
letter that I belong to a superior race to the Africans; 
do you know I doubt it ? Physically, much inferior, 
except in appearance. I cannot notice that they 
are intellectually inferior ; inferior in knowledge, 
indeed, because this country provides them (as 
the ancients said of the golden age) of itself 
with all they feel the need of; they are, therefore, 
indifferent to what we call progress, or the know- 


ledge of nature, and the turning her to our uses. 
Glad to hear Aunt B's interest in this most 
interesting of countries. D's assertion, which 
puzzled K, is most presumptuous. How can any 
man say of a country, of which four-fifths, if not 
nine-tenths, are utterly unknown, that there is this 
or that ? The fringe on which his own eyes have 
rested, he may partly know, but the rest 

June 2oth. 

I was much stronger yesterday, and went out 
for a ride on a donkey ; a splendid beast ; to-day, 
I feel stronger again. The rest have been terribly 
busy packing loads, all to be made up to 70 lbs. ; 
how would you like one on your head ? 

By the bye, you will be glad to hear that to have 
had a severe attack of fever — and mine was a very 
severe one — is considered a good thing ; in fact, the 
doctor told me to-day that he did not think it likely 
I should ever have so bad an attack again. 

June 2ist. 
Douglas was ordained the other day ; three of the 
new men are to be to-rnorrow. 

Monday, June 23rd. 
The mail may be starting to-morrow, so this 
letter goes in to be stamped to-night. 



"Ye have need of patience " is a maxim constantly 
to be remembered by the x\frican traveller. More 
than five months had passed since our party left 
England, and it was only after this long delay that 
they were able to start on their long journey. 

Pilkington describes the first stage of their journey 
in the following letter : — 

" Criterion Hotel, 

Wednesday, July 9th, 1890. 

Here we are, started at last, I am glad to say. We 
left Frere Town at 3 p.m., on Monday ; after a little 
tossing about, and a night on deck (we travelled as 
deck passengers), we got here at 10.30 a.m. yester- 
day, and, since then, I have been resting, and hope to 
do so till early to-morrow morning, when we are to 
leave for Saadani, by H.M.S. ' Redbreast,' and 
start, I expect, with Stokes next day. You'll under- 
stand why I need resting, when I tell you all the 
news. It has been w^onderful how God has brought 
us all (except one, and there are four in his place) to 
the start. About a fortnight ago, I began to feel 
something like myself; but Douglas and Mrs, 


Hooper bci^an to be uilin;;, Dou-las with fever, .niJ 
Mrs. Hooper with overwork : it would h:i\e j^^reatly 
increased tlic hardness of leavin*^' one another had 
either been ilL Well, they both reco\'ered before 
the end of last week — worn out a ,i;ood deal indeecL 
but neither ill. Hnt witli myself it is e\cn niort- 
striking: mv foot is only n(n\. two days before 
startin^^-, reco\-ered ; it has been healed for a week or 
so. Then my fever : I had a sharp attack last 
Friday for twenty-four hours, then again, on Sunday 
morning, mv temperature was 105 ' : I was three 
times awfully sick, and felt as ill as I could be. and 
I belie\ed. as I lay in bed that morning, that tli( 
steamer was to leave at () a.m. lu^xt morning. WC 
should liave had to be uj) at lour, and breakfast, and 
get our personal luggage (I had still two-and-adiall 
loads, 70 lbs. each, unpacked, and accounts to be 
settled) on board in the dark. Was it possible. 1 
thought ? And the horrors of a steamer, too, with 
the Monsoon dead against us, all night as deck 
passengers. But it was all made quite right and 
pleasant — pleasant surprises coming continually."' 

•• Bv the wav, another horror I forgot, the passage, 
and if I did reach Zanzibar ali\e, to Saadani by 
dhow eight hours at least, and \'er}- likely becalmed 
indefinitely halfway, there would have been no time 
for rest here ; we might have gone on immediately 
yesterday. Well, on Sunday at midday, I began to 
improve; then we heard the steamer was not to 
start till 2 p.m. On Monday, I was a good deal 
better and just managed m}- packing, etc. The 
' Yuba' and our deck quarters turned out infinitely 


better than I had expected. I got better and was 
not sick on board. The Bishop (who, expecting us 
to follow in two days, came here a fortnight 
ago) met us with the good news that the 
Admiral, who is here on the ' Boadicea ' with 
a fleet altogether of ten ships, and two trans- 
ports expected, had promised to send us across 
in the ' Redbreast,' a fast vessel, though not 
a large one, whether strictly a man-of-war or a gun- 
boat, I don't know ; this gives one-and-a-half days' 
rest, and spares us the dhow journey, to God be the 

I'm quite well, but still weak : anyhow, its all 
right, we have been joined at the last moment by 
Hunt, of the Company, a delightful fellow and, 
perhaps, the Mombasa doctor, Dr. Edwards, who 
was so good to us when ill, sending Douglas and 
me his own milk, may come too. The Bishop 
telegraphed yesterday, Emin Pasha has reached 
Mpwapwa three weeks ago ; he has been fighting ; 
of course, in the present state of things, without 
Stokes we could' nt go.'" 

" Saadani, 

14th July, 1890. 

Here still ! We had a delightful crossing in the 
' Redbreast,' the Commanding Officer giving us his 
own cabin, where we had breakfast. On arrival we 
found the start put off until Monday (to day) : now 
it is off again till Wednesday ; Shall we really start 
then ? Our first communication long ago with Stokes 
made us expect to start nearly two months ago. 

We are camped here in our tents by the sea ; 


Stokes a hundred yards awa}' (to hear him talk 
Swahih, with an Irish brogue!), and his men in a 
regular town half-a-mile off, but extending a mile or 
more beyond that. My loads are all satisfactorily 
made up, and have been accepted by the porters. 
On Saturday morning, we had a trying time, finally 
packing our loads, which the porters then inspected, 
choosing each man one to suit him. Mine went 
immediately, though each of two was ^Ib. or lib. 
over the regulation weight — yolbs. Besides this, the 
poor men carry 35lbs. of cloth, their own pay, and 
water and cooking pots for themselves ! The men are 
very capricious about their loads — some shapes are 
objectionable, so some of our men had difficulty in 
getting their loads accepted. It was a trying time, 
because the tents, too, had to be made into loads, so 
shelter from the blazing sun was hard to get. But 
none of us, I think, were an}- the worse. The same 
evening we got our mails. 

We have a Bible reading, every day after our mid- 
day meal, each choosing and starting a subject by 

" Sunday, August 3rd. 

Two-thirds of the way to Mamboia, near the 
Mbula Mountains. 

At last, an opportunity of writing, or rather 
starting, a letter ; perhaps it will go from Mamboia, 
which we hope to reach in a week or so. To-day, 
being Sunday, we rest as usual. 

You have heard of Hill's death : he left Saadani 
for the hospital at Zanzibar, early on Sunday 
morning, and died that night. We started next 


mornino^, so we did not hear of his death for a few 

Baskerville has had fever : temperature 105*'' just 
now. I wonder whether he will be able to go on 
my donkey to-morrow ? I don't think he is as ill 
as his temperature seems to make him. However, 
his illness is too like Hill's not to make one feel that 
there is danger. 

Now about myself. I'm quite well, but still 
weak. We have two donkeys, and I generally 
ride half the march. We go an average of nine 
miles a day, and I assure you I find half that plenty. 
Isn't that a confession ? Then this is Africa. 

Baskerville and I in one tent, Dunn and Dermott 
in another. Smith and Hunt in a third, Douglas 
in a small one, and the Bishop in a big one 
by themselves. This is the way we travel. 
We divide the work as follows: D. and D. (as 
above), the canteens, packing and unpacking for 
meals; B., the food boxes; Smith, filtering water ; 
Hunt, making the tea; Myself, the cooking; 
Douglas, everything. Stokes is a most pleasant 
man and extremely kind to us. 

We are getting among some fine mountains, but 
hitherto there has been little striking in any way, 
hardly any fiowers, lions or beasts of beauty or 
interest that I could see. M}- chief interest is 
learning Kiganda. No one else has begun it. I 
have really got on lately. I've been able to get 
some of the main things of the grammar out of my 
friend Noah, who seems to enjo}' teaching me. We 
walk together on the way, and sometimes I find an 


opportunity of establishing myself in a tent with 
pen and ink and m\- old Harrow bank book (which 
is being transformed into a Kiganda grammar) 
while Noah crouches on the floor and is pumped as 
to singulars and plurals, futures and perfects, though 
I need hardly sa}s I don't put it that way. Indeed, 
it has interested, though not surprised me to see 
how utterly foreign and puzzling to N's ideas any 
thought of grammar is. He has never given me a 
rule ; he never generalizes. You would think that 
any one — especially a very intelligent man like N., 
anxious to please me and teach me — would give me 
some general formula for making the future, when 
I ask him, say, ten verbs, in the form ' I shall go,' 
' I shall send,' but no, he doesn't see what I'm 
driving at a bit, but fills up my ' I shall see ' into 
a complete sentence, which he urges me to write 
down, assuring me that his words are ' very good." 

Then again, when I notice what seems an irregu- 
larity, say in one of these futures as compared with 
the others, and ask him why do you say so-and-so, 
whereas in the rest you say so-and-so, why don't 
you say this instead, he answ^ers, ' Oh no,' its not 
that, and repeats it as he said it before. If you urge 
him for an explanation, he says it's words only, 
' don't you see, of course it's this,' and repeats it as 
if you were deaf, or very stupid. 

I've got one or two tiny books with pra\ers and 
the Commandments, and Bible texts, which arc a 
great help, but no grammar. Noah knows Swahili, 
but no English. 

The Germans sent us twice this week a leg of beei 


or veal. Besides this beef, we buy chickens from 
the natives, eggs sometimes, and we use tinned 
meats when we can get nothing else. 

We have for our first meal, oatmeal and Indian 
meal porridge, tea or cocoa, hard biscuits and 
butter (tinned), at 5.30 in the morning. Awful 
scramble while beds, tents, or other loads are being, 
or are to be, packed and sent off, everyone shouting 
for something or someone, all in the dark, made 
visible by one lantern. March before 6. In camp, 
8, g, 10. Food : — Chickens, rice, biscuits, native 
beans, perhaps dried potatoes, jam, any native 
vegetables ; we are looking forward to sweet pota- 
toes (on Sundays, apple rings), at 4.30. Same with 
soup (peagenerall}'), at one or other meals." 

" Mamboia, E. Africa, 

Tuesda)-, August 12th. 

We got here about nine o'clock yesterday morn- 
ing, the day before, Sunday (our usual practice is not 
to march on Sunday), we had a long march of six 
hours, most of which I did on Stokes' donkey : the 
Bishop had hurried ahead a few days before to be 
at Mamboia the longer, taking the larger of our two 
donkeys. Baskerville, who is still weak from the 
late fever, was riding the other. So, of late, I've 
been borrowing S.'s donkey, for I'm not quite 
m\self yet ; though, on the whole, with occasional 
relapses, I've been getting stronger ever since we 
left the coast. 

We stay here (a lovely place, of which more anon) 
till Thursday or Friday. Messrs. Cole and Beverlby 


and Price (of Kisokwe, first two men, and Mpwapwa) 
are expected here to-morrow, for a conference with 
the Bishop, who is not very well. 

^[y last letter didn't enter into details of the 
march as much as I intended, so here goes : — We 
get up some at four, others a bit later, invalids per- 
haps not till five ; then comes a scene, some washing 
in the bucket or basin outside their tent (unless 
they think that an evening wash is enough, for the 
early mornings are very chilly, and the whole thing 
is a rush), others calling for their boys to pack up 
their camp-beds, that the tents may be pulled down, 
which is sometimes done while, if late or lazy, one 
is still inside. Douglas calling out that the man 
for the loan of buckets and basins has come, and 
will everyone send the same at once to his tent. 
Meanwhile, others are seeing to the food, porridges, 
Indian and oatmeal, tea and biscuits. At last a 
whistle is three times blown, and we assemble round 
the cook's fire for S\\ahili prayers ; then the rush is 
resumed, increased by the food being ready, as 
everyone is anxious to get some and be off, if the 
march is to be long and the sun likely to be hot 
later on. 

Then comes Dunn and Dermott"s turn, who have 
to pack the canteens from which we eat, and which 
it is well to get off earl}', as we shall want them for 
our next meal. Douglas stays last of all and sees 
that the men take their loads, often carrying what is 
left behind. More than twenty porters have died 
since leaving Saadani, dysentery chiefiy. Remember, 
there are 2,200 odd. 


Tli(jn coiiitis the inarch. (Juite cold at first, the 
grass, perhaps, dewy. On past the porters, who 
\\ ahv quite slowly with their loads of /olbs. for an 
hour (the men have been so ill), two, three or four 
hours, as the case ma}- be. Some of our men go 
ahead and choose a camp well in front of the rest. 
Then the question is, w^hen will this load or that 
load come in? Is my tent in? Ha\e they brought 
my bed in, or left it down among the other loads ? 
How about the canteens and the food boxes ? Shall 
we have anything to eat before twelve? (ii a.m. 
is the hour we aim at.) Has the man we sent, two 
liours ago — immediately on reaching the camp — to 
buy chickens and eggs and sweet potatoes, come 
back } et ? Ha\e the bo}s draw n water }'et, or ha\e 
tJie buckets not conu; in yet ? Here's ni}- tent, but 
has the man with the ]>egs come ? The sun's so 
hot, and there's hardly an\' shade — where's m\- bo\- 
wdth my water bottles ? etc., etc., etc. 

At last, several tents are pitched, and in one of 
them we get the table ready for food and have our 
second meal. Then we have our Bible reading : 
then we read, rest, wash, etc.. as we severally please. 
Meanwhile food has again to be seen to. This 
comes oft' at 4.30. Then Swahili prayers, which 
Douglas and I take by turns. Idien, after everything 
which can ])e packed in the e\'ening is done with, to 
bed. It is an interesting and a novel way of life, 
but it would be a stretch to call it a pleasant one. 
and a pause in a house, as liere, is a great relief and 
a resU 

Now 5 ab'jul liic plaLc Maniboia li a collection 


of villages, some of only a dozen beehiNe huts, lying 
in a broad \allcy, among beautiful mountains, rising 
not high above the valley, though 4,000 feet or so 
above the sea. The hill-sides, too, are crowded with 
villages. Wood, the C.M.S. man here, says you 
can pass thirty-two villages in an hour's walk. The 
\alley is extensively cultivated — Indian corn, millet, 
sweet potatoes, banana, and pine apples, etc. The 
mission station is situated most beautifully, high 
abo\-e the vallc}-, 3,960 feet above sea level, com- 
manding a grand view of it. It is built on a com- 
paratively level slope. There are two houses, three 
rooms in each, besides store rooms (the Roscoes, 
whom C. and S. met at Cambridge, were here.) 
Belo^^• the house is a garden, where, beside nati^•c 
things, English flowers and vegetables are grown. 
It is wonderful to see the geraniums and petunias in 
full bloom in Africa (it is so cold here) ; carrots, too, 
and potatoes. A church is being built — stone walls ; 
for mortar, the ordinary earth, which is better than 
our mortar, for it has all been worked by white ants ; 
walls three feet thick. It is paid for b}- Wood 
himself and the natives, who give either in kind or 
in labour. Wc had service there this mornin^r: 
thirty natives or so present. They speak a language 
which is called Kimegi, which bears resemblance to 
both Kiswahili and Kiganda. 

This is a splendidly healthy place and we hope to 
gather health and strength here. I wish I could 
tell of anything encouraging in our work. The 
Lord is with us, and to Him all power is given in 
Heaven and in earth, even in Africa. Frav that 


this power may be shewn, and that nothing in us 
may hinder it/' 

" Kisokwc (six miles beyond Mpwapwa), E. Africa, 

Friday, 22nd August, 1890. 

Here we are at Kisokwe, rather over two hundred 
miles from the coast, not quite so far as Chagga, 
from which we came back in ten days, and yet on 
Monday, when we expect to start again, it will be 
five weeks since leaving the coast. We arrived 
early yesterday, 7.15 a.m., from Mpwapwa. Here I 
was met by Mwaka or Andreya (Christian baptismal 
name) the boy who taught me on the steamer. He 
came running to meet me. I gave him some 
chocolate, and hope to give him a piece of cloth 
before I go. He has been preaching to the people 
since he came back. His mother comes each 
Saturday to the Mission to be taught ; this means 
a walk of three hours over the hills with a child on 
her back. She goes back on Mondays. This is 
the most encouraging thing I ha\'e heard or seen 
in Africa. I hope and believe we may say in both 
cases, ' This hath God done.' 

You will have heard what is at present uncertain 
news about Uganda. The Germans, in the fort at 
Mpwapwa, have received news that the English 
Company's expedition to the lake (we know they 
are live hundred rifles strong, and are even now 
followed by probably a second party eight hundred 
strong) have combined with the Protestants in 
Uganda, and ousted Mwanga and put Kalema, the 
Arab nominee, upon the throne. Likely enough, 


too, if the jealousy between the Roman Catholic 
chiefs and the Protestants comes to a head. We 
heard of the growing jealously in Zanzibar, but 
wh}' Kalema ? Surely the Arabs are not in league 
with the English Company ! Was it in default of 
an\- other of the blood royal, or has he turned 
Protestant (I don't say Christian) on the chance of 
a crown ? Had Mwanga favoured the Roman 
Catholics or even taken to Protestant persecution 
again ? Or is it all a lie ? I daresay we shall all 
know when you read this letter. 

By the way, I'll say here that I've not ridden a 
donkey since Mamboia and am strong and well ; 
Baskerville is still rather feeble. The house at 
Mpwapwa was burnt down by the Arabs ; all agree 
that it was a \er\' good thing ; the house \\as so 
grand as to be a hindrance to the work. Mpwapwa 
is a ver\- populous place. Lateh', Price, the 
Missionary there, has been encouraged by the 
increased numbers coming. Here they have three 
hundred in church on Sunday and sevent\' every 
day. Kigogo is the language here. Cole, the 
Missionary, was nearly killed by a buffalo not so 
long ago. 

We have come through some magnihcent \alle\s 
— some of them populous enough; the country, from 
Mamboia as far as this, is the mountain region of 
Usagara. On Monday, we start into a comparati\ely 
flat th(nigh ele\ated country. Just beyond 
Mamboia is the pass of Rutako, 4,700 feet higher 
than Ben Nevis. You ought to look all these out 
in the C.M.S. Atlas." 


" Sunday, 24th August, 2 p.m., Kisokwe. 
We had a confirmation this morning. Fourteen 
from Mpwapwa, and I think twelve from Kisokwe ; 
some big men, rough and wild looking. Three 
hundred natives or so were present. Our visit here 
has been encouraging." 

After leaving Kisokwe,, the roughest part of the 
journey began, and is graphically described by 
Bishop Tucker in a letter from Unyanguira, about 
one hundred and twenty miles beyond Kisokwe. 

The Bishop writes as follows : — 

" Unyanguira, E.E. Africa, 

September 6th, 1S90. 

" As you will see from the above address, we arc 
getting on. We are now, I suppose, within six 
weeks of the Victoria Nyanza. Our progress has 
been slow, but not the less sure on that account. I 
believe xAfrica is one of those countries in which it is 
essentially true that it is the pace that kills. The 
tortoise very frequently wins the race here. 

The solemn services of Sunday, August 24th, over 
— that is to say, the ordination of Messrs. Cole and 
Wood, and the confirmation of thirty candidates — 
we prepared for an early departure on Monday, 25th. 
We left Kisokwe at 6.30 a.m. Mr. Cole accom- 
panied us as far as our first camping ground. We 
there bade him an affectionate farewell, and, as a 
party, were once more alone. 

To get water entailed a journey of three hours, 
and, when obtained, it was found to be distinctly 
brackish in flavour. The night spent at this spot we 


shall not easily forget. It was an open, sandy plain, 
across which the wind rushed with unobstructed 
force. Our tents, happily, had been pitched in good 
time, so that, when the wind arose, we had some 
shelter, however precarious. Every moment we 
expected our tents to be blown away. Not one of 
us got a wink of sleep that night. As w^e were to 
make a long march through a porri or waterless 
desert the next day, it had been arranged to start at 
3.30 a.m., so, at two o'clock, I gave the signal to 
prepare for the march. The wind, a few minutes 
later, dropped in a very remarkable way. We were 
thus enabled to pack, and prepare breakfast in 
comfort. Most providentially, the day proved to be 
cloudy, so the march was robbed of half its horrors. 
None but those who have experienced it can under- 
stand what it is to have a burning sun beating down 
from above, and scorching heat rising from the 
burning ground or sand at the same moment. This, 
happily, we were spared in going through this 
porri. We marched for six hours, and then 
halted to prepare some food with the water from our 
water-bottles. After an hour's rest, we resumed our 
journey, and, in a couple of hours, reached our 
camping-ground ; but here again, alas ! the water 
was brackish. Still, we had to drink it, and were 
very thankful for it. It is wonderful the things you 
take kindly to when there is no other alternative. 
During the last two months, I have swallowed more 
mud in water than in all m}- life previoush'. And 
not only swallowed it, but swallowed it thankfully. 
Another day of brackish water had to be endured, 


and then we started on another long march through 
another waterless tract of country. We were now in 
Ugogo — which is indeed a weary land — a land which 
seems stricken with a curse — even the forests are 
leafless and bare. Here and there, out of the sandy 
plain, rises a conical hill, 200 or 300 feet high — 
whether volcanic in its origin, I cannot tell — probab- 
ly the ants have had something to do with the work 
of raising them. About these hills, a few huge 
boulders have been tumbled. How grateful their 
shade — ' the shadow of a mighty rock within a 
w^eary land.' Of a truth, with the exception of 
these few^ hills and rocks, the country is a sandy 
waste. The inhabitants of the few villages we came 
across have to dig for water in the earth. Some of 
these holes are thirty feet deep. These holes are 
our only hope of water. You can imagine how 
eagerly we look down into their depths. This second 
long march in this waterless district was distinctly 
more trying than the first. Still we held upon our 
way, upborne with hope of fresh and sweet water. 
This, happily, we found as we halted at Mizanza. 

Here we spent two days, in order to bring up the 
rear. Our rear was in a considerable state of excite- 
ment ; a straggler had been speared by the Wagogo, 
and his load taken from him. The surgical skill of 
Messrs. Dermott and Dunn was again put to the 
test. Of course he had been speared in the back. 
The wound was a bad one, but still not fatal. The 
oest was done for him, and he is now, I am glad to 
sa};, all right again. This incident was a disagreeable 
reminder that we are now in a country in many 


respects hostile. The Wagogoare <::^reat thieves and 
bullies. We have just received the startling news 
that they have almost utterly destroyed an Arab 
caravan of 500 porters — within a few miles of where 
we now are — men, women, and children, all 
massacred. Two or three of our own mail-men have 
also been murdered. This very serious business will 
probablv delay us a few days, as the German com- 
mander is going to punish the chiefs of the tribes 
implicated. This will probably mean burning 
villages and hanging one or two of the chiefs. Oh, 
when will this country — this land of misery, and sin, 
and death, emerge out of its utter darkness ? Truly, 
to pass through is oppressive to the spirit in the 
highest degree. Owing to the state of the country, 
the German commander has intimated to me that 
he will not be responsible for my safety (not that I 
regard him as in any sense responsible), if I do not 
keep nearer the main body on the march. Usually, 
I am in the habit of going ahead with our fastest 
donkey, so as to be in a position to choose the most 
favourable site for our camp, when the kiongozi — or 
leader — has indicated the spot where water is to be 
found. Of course, when a large number of Natives 
are travelling together, this is a most important 
matter. I generally try t(^ get to windward of their 
camp. I suppose now I shall have to be a little 
more careful. Yesterday, for the first time, I made 
the acquaintance of zebra-steaks. Wo passed a large 
herd of zebras whilst on the march, and one of the 
(rermans managed to shoot one at long range : this 
was brought into camp later in the day, and the 


f^iiccessfiil marksman very kindly sent us a joint. 
We found it very good — quite an acceptable change 
in our diet/' 

"September 9th, 1S90. 

" The air for the last few days has been full of war 
and rumours of war. Saturday night was a night 
to be remembered. After we had pitched our tents 
near Unyanguira, and were preparing for our meal, 
we were startled by hearing that two German 
soldiers had been murdered at a village hard by, 
whither they had gone with cloth to bu}^ food. 

'' Some time previously — that is, almost at the time 
of our arrival here — I informed the German oflicer, 
Lieutenant Siegel, that I had seen a number of 
Wagogo marching off from a neighbouring tembe 
(or village) with shields and spears, apparently in 
military order. He seemed to attach no great im- 
portance to this fact. To my mind, it seemed an 
indication of the state of the country around. After 
events proved the correctness of my surmise. The 
moment the news arrived of the murder, Lieutenant 
Siegel called his men together and marched off to 
endeavour to bring in the dead bodies, with the 
arms and ammunition with which the men left the 
camp. In about an hour's time he returned, bring- 
ing in one dead man — the other body he was unable 
to recover. One of the men died very nobly. When 
he left the camp, he received strict orders that on no 
account was he to fire on the natives. When he 
approached the village, he held his gun in his left 
hand and his cloth in the right. He said, ' I have 

The long xMArcH. 97 

come to buy food." The natives threatened him 
with their spears. He answered, ' I am not going 
to light with you. My orders are to buy food, and 
not to shoot. You can kill me if you like,' and held 
out his arms. Immediately the spears were plunged 
into his body in half-a-dozen places, and he fell, in 
obeying orders, as nobly, it seems to me, as ever any 
soldier fell in battle. The other poor fellow had no 
rifle ; he immediately took to flight and endeavoured 
to escape. He was pursued for half an hour through 
the porri by these Wagogo bloodhounds, and fell, 
pinned by a dozen spears. The Lieutenant also 
informed us that the country was swarming with 
men in arms, and that evidently they meant 
flghting ; that, in all probability, an attack would be 
made upon us some time during the night. We at 
once set about making as good a disposition of our 
men and loads as possible. At the moment, they 
were actually in as bad a position as they could be 
— scattered about in little camps over a wide plain. 
Word to concentrate was sent round, and soon we 
had the Wan3'amwezi camped all around us. Our 
force was, unfortunately, divided ; Mr. Stokes, with 
several hundred men, was some miles in the rear. Mes- 
sengers were sent ofl" to him with information as to the 
serious state of affairs. (We afterwards learned that 
these runners did not leave the camp until five hours 
after they had been ordered to leave). The German 
officer in command had only seventeen soldiers now 
left. It is true they were armed with breechloaders, 
but it was a force altogether insufficient to deal with 
the mass of men which filled the country in front. 



Our trust was in the Lord God Omnipotent. We 
placed men to watch during the night, and com- 
mitted ourselves into the hands of our Keeper — the 
Keeper of Israel — who neither slumbereth nor 
sleepeth. I could not help being struck with the 
evening portion of ' Daily Light,' which I read as I 
turned into my tent : * Watchman, what of the 
night ? ' I slept from nine till four in the morning, 
and then rose. The Lieutenant was of opinion that 
if an attack came, it would be about half an hour 
before sunrise, that is to say, at about half-past 
five a.m. We were on the alert, but, happily, no 
attack came, and, as the sun rose above the level of 
the plain, we felt that we, through the goodness of 
God, had escaped a great danger. Of course, you 
know that we missionaries, as a party, are entirely 
unarmed. There is no doubt at all that, had the 
Wagogo chosen to attack us during the night, they 
could easily have massacred the whole lot of us — 
even had we been armed. I do not regret in the 
very least coming without arms. We should not 
have used them, and they would only have been a 
temptation to the men and boys. 

A little after eight o'clock, on Sunday morning, 
Mr. Stokes arrived, and I felt at once that, humanly 
speaking, things would be arranged. He is a man 
of great influence with the natives — a man who 
keeps his word with them, and who has never done 
an unkind action with regard to them. Besides all 
which, he has travelled up and down and through 
this country for years. He at on':e sent out men to 
try to get hold of a native through whom communi- 



cation could be opened up and the matter arranged. 
In this they were successful, and, in an hour or two, 
words were spoken between the parties. The chief 
of the country disavows the action of his people. 
The men, he says, were killed contrary to his orders. 
This disavowal is most satisfactory, as it puts a 
different complexion upon the matter. The death 
of these men was therefore murder, and not an act 
of war. Mr. Stokes thereupon demanded that the 
murderers be given up for punishment. Whether 
this will be done or not it is impossible to say. I 
cannot help feeling, myself, that the chief is merely 
excusing himself and trying to put the best possible 
aspect upon the matter. There is no doubt in my 
mind that the Wagogo would destroy us if they 
could as completely as they have destroyed the 
Arab caravan. What they fear is the presence of 
many white men. When they came into camp, they 
said, What can we do against loo Muzungu, or 
white men ? (We are only fourteen). 

A letter has just arrived from Dr. Wolfendale, 
who is some miles awa)-, stating that he is in 
difficulties, and asking for assistance. Dr. W^olfen- 
dale, you will remember, is a brother of Mr. 
\\'olfendale, the Congregational minister in Durham. 
He has come out in connection with the L.M.S., 
and ]s travelling with a caravan of his own, and is 
bound for Urambo. It seems that a Wagogo chief 
has stopped or barred his passage until he has paid 
heavy hongo. He hears, moreover, that there is 
another chief, a little wa}- in advance, who is waiting 
to make a still heavier demand upon him, and so he 


has written asking if we can help him out of his 
difficulties. This we are very glad to be in a 
position to do. We have sent off armed men, who 
will, in a few hours, we trust, bring him on here, and 
then we shall travel on together until we get out of 
Ugogo. Dr. Wolfendale's kind attention to poor 
Hill, who died at Zanzibar, I shall never forget, and 
I am only too thankful to be in a position — in some 
degree — to requite that kindness. Dr. Wolfendale 
in his note says that so far he has had a pleasant 
and prosperous journey. We expect him to arrive 
at about four or five p.m. I trust there will be no 
fighting in getting him here. I do not anticipate it." 


" Dr. Wolfendale and his caravan have just come 
into camp, escorted by the German soldiers sent by 
Mr. Stokes for his rescue out of the dangerous 
position he was undoubtedly in. Lieut. Siegel 
thinks that, without question, he has escaped a 
great danger. The country is simply swarming 
with armed Wagogo. A single act of imprudence 
will be like throwing a firebrand into a powder 
magazine. May God give patience and wisdom to 
those who are concerned in the arrangement of this 
matter ! " 

"September loth, 1890. 

" I am thankful to say that all danger of a collision 
with the Wagogo seems now to be over. The chief 
has sent in the murdered man's rifle and ammuni- 
tion, but declares his inability to produce the 
murderers, as they have fled out of his country. 


He is willing, however, to pay the blood-money in 
ivory and cattle. He says he has no cause of war 
with us, and desires peace for himself and people. 
I believe, myself, that he simply fears our strength, 
and that, had we been a small caravan, he would 
have smashed us up without mercy. However, 
* all's well that ends well.' We shall probably 
take him at his word and go on our way. Mr. 
Stokes will probably leave the Germans at 
Mpwapwa, on the coast, to call the Wagogo to 
account for the destruction of the Arab caravan. 
I am thankful to be able to report the safe arrival 
of our mail men at Usongo. They escaped the 
massacre, and are now, in all probability, at 

"September nth, 1890. 

We left our camp in front of Unyanguira this 
morning, and a two hours' march brought us to an 
abundance of water and food. We shall evidently 
get through Ugogo without any attack by the 
natives. They seem thoroughly to respect our 
strength. An Arab caravan, bound for the coast, 
has just come in, and I must send this and other 
letters by it, so must close. We are all in good 
health and full of hope, greatly cheered by our near 
approach to a country more hospitable than Ugogo. 
The Master has indeed been with us, guiding, 
keeping, strengthening, and comforting us at all 
times. All being well, we hope to be in Uganda 
before this letter reaches you. We expect to reach 
Usongo about the end of September, and to be at 


Usambiro about October 21st. But we are in the 
Lord's hands, and can calculate on nothing ; content 
to live a day at a time." 

On October 3rd, 1890, Pilkington continues, writing from 
Byaba, 12 miles South of Usongo. 

" Here is another chance (sooner than we expected) 
of writing. Mail men have just arrived from the 
Lake ; they go on to-morrow. I was not expecting 
to have an opportunity of writing till we had reached 
Usongo, so you must excuse a scanty letter. Usongo 
is Stokes' village; the chief, Mtumginya, is his 
ardent friend and supporter. We hope to get there 
at 8 a.m. to-morrow, after a four hours' march 
through a ' porri,' or scrubby forest (nothing but 
scrubby little trees, fairly close together, nothing 
grand), these ' porris ' are uninhabited tracts, in 
fact, where there is a village, a clearing is made for 
cultivation ; uninhabited, I should say, but for 
robbers, who catch stragglers with loads of cloth 
and kill or disable them. We got through the 
' Mgunda Mkali ' at last ; we had a two da3^s' halt 
on the verge, owing to difficulties with our 
Wasukuma porters, which made it especially trying 
to the men, whose cloth, for food, had to last all the 
same. My cookery has, of late, been greatly helped 
by quantities of native butter and honey. I have 
just borrowed, to my great joy, a Kiganda Grammar 
in French, by a Priest, from one of the German 
party, a Dane ; it will be a great help and most 
interesting, after I have tried to make things out for 
so long without such help. 


Have just come back from packing my bucket, or 
rather arranging for packing in the morning — getting 
out loads and stowing in tins, native meal, rice, milk, 
honey, butter, pea-flour, etc., etc — not quite all these 
to-night. We shall be called about 2.30 a.m. to- 
morrow — the loads will go off to-night now that I 
have done with them. I am writing, through the 
Bishop's kindness, in his tent, and on his materials. 
You will have heard, by telegram perhaps, a 
month before this reaches you, the news of general 
interest which goes by this mail, the various 
incidents in Uganda ; Emin Pasha, just beyond 
Usongo, unable to proceed because of war in 
Usukuma — we are thankful to hear that now this 
is at an end ; the death of four French Priests. 
Anyhow, the upshot of all this, as far as we are 
concerned, is this : that we hope and believe at the 
present moment we shall be able now to go right on 
into Uganda without delay, except four days or so 
at Usongo to settle about the carriage of forty or 
fifty C.M.S. loads (left there long ago) to Usambiro 
(the C.M.S. station at the South of the Lake, 
where Deekes and Walker, of the C.M.S., and 
Gedge, of the British Company, are at present 
trying to buy from the Arabs), and such further 
delay at the latter place as may be thought desirable, 
or may be necessary, for preparing the boat or boats 
to^convey us and our effects. The C.M.S. boat was 
soon to go back with Gedge ; it will now, no doubt, 
wait if possible for us, as they ought to have 
received the Bishop's letter from Mamboia some 
days ago, just after the departure of their mail men. 


who arrived here to-day, having passed our mail 
men a few days only from Usambiro. 

We are now in a land of plenty, such a relief 
after Ugogo. Usongo is a goal we have long 
looked forward to. Our rest there will give an 
opportunity, much needed, of washing and mending 
our clothes, our bodies and other effects, e.g., my 
camp bed, which is rather out at elbows. We 
are all quite well and strong, and so we can see a 
great deal for which to praise God, not that this is 
not always ' comely for the righteous,' ' it becometh 
well the just(ified) to be thankful.' We have long 
hoped in vain for letters : there'll be the more when 
they do come. We got our last at Mamboia. 

Douglas has just come for letters, and for buckets, 
the porter whereof wants to do them up for an early 
start ; nobody knows where they all are — I chiefly 
use them for the kitchen — so I have promised to 
hunt them up, and, as it is pitch dark, I had better 
set to at once, as it is now 7.10 p.m., and we are to 
get up at 2.30, and lots of other things are to be 

" Nera (two days from Usambiro), 

Saturday, October i8th, 1890. 

We expect to start on Monday from here, and 
reach Usambiro early on Wednesday. The C. 
M. S. boat, we heard yesterday, started, a 
fortnight ago, for Uganda, with Walker. The 
Bishop will be greatly vexed at this, for it 
means our stopping at least a month at this end of 
the lake. Two rnen of our party are going to stay 


at Nassa with Deekes for the present, and Usambiro 
will be given up ; this is not certain, but only very 
probable. Nassa is four days from Usambiro to the 
West, on the Lake, Hooper's old station, very good 
for the work, except for a cantankerous chief. \\'e 
had a note from Emin Pasha yesterday, asking for 
letters to be forwarded ; he is four or five days from 

We are all, I am thankful to say, perfectly well. 
We arrived here, after some hard days, very tired ; 
so the rest is very acceptable though tantalizing, 
when so near the end, but unavoidable, as this is 
the home of most of our W^asukuma porters, and they 
have nearly all run off and left their loads, declaring 
they only agreed to carry them as far as this. 

We have lately had lots (well, comparatively 
speaking) of milk, much of it sour, which we all, 
myself not least, appreciate very much. 

This is a very populous country — people very 
friendly — I should think as populous as a great part 
of the country in England. We are stopping a mile 
or so from the Capital, where the chief lives, at the 
village of a Mwanangwa (or village chief), who has 
been with us from the coast. We killed a bull 
yesterday, given us by a chief some way back, so 
the cooking department is busy, and boys and all 
are in clover. How pleasant the prospect of reach- 
ing a station is, I can't express, except by asking 
you to imagine reaching Dublin or Kingstown by 
steamer after a stormy crossing : — No more cooking, 
no more marching, no more resting (?) in a broiling 


At Usongo, where Stokes had a place of his own 
built for him by the chief, we found among a lot of 
C. M. S. property stored, most of which is to 
follow us, a Kiganda grammar in English, a very 
poor one, still a great treasure, and a cookery book ! 
both of which were presented to me. I succeeded 
in making a very good sweet omelette the other day, 
but good eggs are scarce ; out of 38, the other day, 
less than ten were eatable. They were a present ; 
I weigh them in water before buying. Yesterday 
and to-day I tried and rejected 20, I daresay. 

No mail from the coast yet. 

It has been decided to send mail men to Stokes 
to get our loads taken on from here ; w^e shall go on, 
we hope, with a few of our personal things. 

" We also got a French Kiganda grammar at 
Usongo ; it is a far better one than the English ; 
it was published three years later. 

Did I tell you that the Latin word ' mensa,' 
' table,' has passed through Portuguese into 
Swahili in the form of * meza,' and thence by a 
reverse process into Kiganda, as * menza ' ? I am 
afraid I shall find it hard not to go on with 
' menzam, menzae, &c., &c.' " 

Two days later the party arrived at Usambiro, 
and thus came to the end of the long march from 
the coast. 

A member of that party. Rev. F. C. Smith, gives 
some interesting reminiscences of this journey. He 
says that Pilkington was specially noted for the 
keenness with which he would urge the claims of 


his favourite hobbies, whether it were superfatted 
soap, or Jaeger boots, or, it might be, his methods of 
language study. 

When he got hold of a man who would help him 
in his language, he almost made his life a burden to 
him, and it is said that some of the Baganda, on the 
way] up, shunned him if they thought they were 
going to be catechised. 

He was always great on controversy, or on the 
solving of problems. Bishop Tucker once set a 
problem on political economy which Pilkington 
would not leave till he had solved. 

He strongly contended with his fellow Missionaries 
that the worth of a thing was the amount that it 
would fetch at a particular place. 

" Usambiro, E.E. Africa, 

Saturday, November ist, 1890. 

We got here ten days ago : Wednesday, the 
22nd. Douglas arrived the evening before, by an 
afternoon march ; the Bishop and Dermott on the 
Saturday mid-day, having gone ahead from Nera. 
On Thursday, i.e., the next day, the Bishop and 
Hooper and Deekes went on to Nassa, to see 
about re-establishing a station there. This place 
is to be given up as a Missionary Station, and 
Deekes and Dermott are to go to Nassa. They 
left me with the five other men in temporary charge 
of this place, where there are about twenty boys 
and eight girls on the station ; most of them, 
including two dwarfs, left here by Stanley. They 
had been seized by his men during the wars in the 


interior, and were redeemed from them by Mackay. 
Seeing after them and our own boys, and the 
household arrangements, as well as school in the 
afternoon—besides trying to buy a good supply of 
meal, rice, honey, etc., to support us here and to 
carry on to Uganda (where the late disturbances 
have caused great scarcity) — makes me busy. 
Besides, I want to do Luganda and read all day, 
what seems, after Safari, the endless wealth of books 
that we find here. I sleep at night on a bed made 
by Mackay, on which both he and Bishop Parker 
died. The graves of these two and Blackburn (who 
formed three of the party of six who were here 
when Hooper w^as last at Usambiro), are within a 
stone's throw almost. 

The reading sheets we use, each afternoon, were 
printed — at least the large letters — with wooden 
type cut by Mackay with his knife. We have this 
type in the printing office. 

The C.M.S. boat, as I think I told you, has gone 
on to Uganda. Stokes' boat we expect here any 
day, but how many of us will be able to travel by 
her we don't know yet. The Bishop and the two 
others may be back in three or four days, now. By 
the way, I had a day-and-p.-halfs fever soon after 
we got here (temp. 103^) but not much, and it is 

Here, two subjects dealt with in this letter may 
be mentioned, showing that, although deeply 
occupied with his own Mission work, he kept up a 
deep interest in the spheres in which he had worked, 


and especially in Harrow, and also in other Mission 

"My letter's in The Harrovianl It tickles my 
foolish pride to know it, and it is pleasant not to be 
forgotten. There are so many at Harrow of whom 
I think continually, that it is only fair that they 
should have been reminded of me. It w^as interesting 
seeing the pictures of Harrow in The Illustrated, 
which has just arrived. 

I have just written a note to Mr. Broomhall, in 
which I promise him £10 for the work in China, 
w^hich he says is to help ' an attempt to evangelise, 
in the course of the next ten years, the whole of 
China.' To give £10 for such a purpose looks 
almost like a joke, but every little helps, and it will 
be accepted according to what I have, not what I 
have not." 

"Sunday, nth. 

More than a fortnight since I began this, and 
much has happened. I have not written because, 
during that time I have had two more attacks 
of fever (Temperature 105*^ and 104*^), both 
short and not serious. But I have sad news : 
another of our company has been taken to rest. 
Hunt, w^ho joined us at the coast, having been in 
the service of the Company, died on Friday, after 
six days' illness, of fever, and finally we thought we 
saw symptoms of typhoid. We buried him that 
evening. I was asked by the others, Deekes — who 
had returned from Nassa — and our men, to read the 
service in English. He was buried beside Mackay, 
near Parker and Blackburn. That evening, the 


Bishop and Hooper came back ; the Bishop not yet 
well from two attacks of fever he has had at Nassa. 
Hooper had had fever too. Deekes had come back 
a week before. Dunn has had fever twice here, and 
is seriously ill still. Baskerville is just recovering. 
Myself, three times ; everyone of our coast boys too. 
The latter we have sent back to the coast now, and 
very glad they are gone. Coast men and boys are 
the worst in all Africa, they combine the vices of 
European and Arabian civilisation with those of 

We have divided up the boys here among our- 
selves, each man undertaking to provide for his 
three or four, and to take complete care of them. 
In fact, we adopt them, as they have no relations 
or other friends for such time, at least, as we shall be 
in the country. I've got three intelligent and very 
willing boys, Nasitu, who came with Stanley (say 
14 years), Matruki, about the same age, and Kitera, 
12 years. I expect I shall now have one of Hunt's. 

We expect the boat ever}/ day. I'm particularly 
well now ; these touches of fever for two or three 
days are totally different from what I had at the 
coast. I'm thankful for that now, both because I 
probably escaped thereby having a bad attack on 
the road, or here without a doctor, and other things, 
and also without the experience of myself which I 
have now. We had Communion this morning at 
7 a.m." 

"21st November. 

More sad news. I told you Dunn was ill. 
He died last night very quietly. I've had wot 


more quite slight attacks of fever ; they are 
good things, as taking the place of a heavy 
attack. Hunt had been in Africa a year without a 
day's illness. His first attack carried him off in six 
days. Dunn had merely a touch of fever two or 
three days before, and then, in a week, he is taken. 
Most thankful I am that my first and serious 
attack was at the coast. We hope to be off soon 
for Uganda." 

At last, after six weeks delay fraught with such 
terrible disaster to the party, the long-looked for 
boat arrived. Mr. Smith tells us that, when the 
natives sighted the boat, they called out in Luganda 
which Pilkington was the first to understand, and 
danced about in glee at having been the first to bear 
the good news. 

" Usambiro, 

Tuesday, December 2nd, 1890, 
I am thankful to say the boat arrived a few days 
ago, and we hope to start on Thursday. We shall be 
glad indeed to get out of this poisonous place ; I've 
had my sixth dose of fever since I came here, and 
am seedy now. Baskerville was ordained deacon 
and Hooper and Dermott priests, yesterday." 

"Christmas Eve, 1890. 
On the boat among the Sesse islands, Victoria 
Nyanza. Within a day or two of Uganda (or 
rather Mengo, the Capital) we have met canoes 
on their way to bring up the rest of our loads — 
so I write a line. We have had, on the whole, a 


pleasant voyage. I've had fever four times, but 
am particularly well. We shall miss Christmas 
in Uganda ; I'm to try with bananas, Mtama 
flour, &:c., to make a pudding for Christmas. On 
Sunday, I spoke, through Noah, and a little on 
my own account, to twelve Waganda in the morning 
and fifty in the evening, sitting outside my tent. 
I've also spoken to little knots on islands and main- 
land since we reached the Uganda country. 
Captain Lugard has reached Uganda, so the place 
will soon be settled." 

So he thought, but the settlement was not to 
come so soon as he expected. 


7 E A^-S;fT^^'^ A ¥/,R I 





Ox the threshold of Uganda, it may be well to 
pause for a moment in order to remind ourselves of 
some of the events which had taken place since 
Missionaries of the Church Missionary Society first 
entered on work in this great district of Central 
Africa, and also to gain an idea of the meaning 
of some of the terms which will be used in this and 
succeeding chapters. 

It was in November, 1875, that Stanley's mem- 
mor^ble letter to the Daily Telegraph appeared, 
telling of King Mtesa's willingness to receive 
teachers, which led to the sending forth of the first 
band of Missionaries. Since that time, in spite of 
disease and death, and in spite of the fickleness of 
Mtesa, the work was maintained. 

Mwanga succeeded his father in October, 1SS4, 
and then indeed, a reign of terror began. 
Persecution tried to the utmost the early Baganda 
converts, some of whom were tortured and burnt 
to death ; then followed the murder of P>i5hop 
Hannington, the excuse for which was that the 
bishop had approached Uganda from an unlucky 
side. Still, Mackay and Ashe kept the field, the 

I 113 


former for a considerable time alone. Gordon and 
Walker took his place in the summer of 1887, 
Alackay retiring to the south end of the Lake. The 
following year they were obliged to leave Uganda 
owing to a revolution in which Mwanga was driven 
from the country. 

He was, however, re-instated at the end of 1889 
and Gordon and Walker returned with him. 

Meanwhile Mackay, who had been a member of 
the first Missionary party and had never left Africa, 
died at Usambiro on February 8th, 1890, at which 
place Bishop Parker had also died. Mr. Jackson had 
entered Uganda as a representative of the British 
East Africa Company, followed a little later by 
Captain Lugard. Such was the condition of affairs 
when Bishop Tucker and his party arrived. It may 
not be out of place to explain here that the term 
Uganda is a word used by English travellers and 
others as a name for the country to the north of the 
Victoria Nyanza, which is known by the natives as 
Buganda. Still, the name Uganda is so familar to 
English readers that its use is justifiable. The 
inhabitants of Buganda are known as Baganda, or, 
as it is in Swahili, Waganda ; a single native of 
Buganda is known as a Muganda, whilst the 
language is termed Luganda, or, as the Swahili 
have it, Kiganda. 

The Victoria Nyanza is the largest of the chain of 
lakes which extends in a broken line from the Nile 
Valley to the Zambesi. Its area is rather greater 
than that of Scotland, so that it may almost be called 
an inland sea. 


Reference to the map of the entire lake will <(ive 
the best idea of the position of Uganda, and it will 
be noticed that there are a large number of islands 
in its immediate vicinity, and closely identified with 
It in politics and religion. The land is said to 
consist of a succession of hills and hollows, and the 
soil is exceedingly fertile, so that the hillsides are, in 
many cases, covered with rich groves of plantains 
and bananas. 

The climate is an unusually healthy one for 
Africa, and, when the railway is completed, it is 
hoped that the risks to health may be still further 
dnnmished; as the trying journey from the coast, 
through belts of the most malarious country, has 
been responsible for much of the sickness and death 
of members of the Uganda Mission. 

The most interesting geographical boundary of 
Uganda is the River Nile, on the east, which flows 
out of the Victoria Nyanza over the magnificent 
Ripon Falls. 

The appearance of the country has been changed 
by the laying out of roads in the neighbourhood of 
the capital. In other parts, there are only the 
ordinary African paths. 

The capital of Buganda is generally known as 
Mengo, though that word is more accurately applied 
to the hill on which the king's residence is 
situated, which is only one of about thirteen hills of 
which the capital is composed. The best known of 
the other hills are Namirembe, the centre of the 
C. M. S. Mission ; Rubaga, of the Roman Catholic 
Mission: Kampala, at that time the hcad-(juarters 



of the representatives of the British East Africa 
Company ; and Natete, where the Mohammedan 
chiefs have settled. 

With this short preface, and with the aid of the 
maps and plans which illustrate these points, we 
may pick up our travellers where we left them pre- 

Map of Uganda and surrounding districts. 

paring for a voyage across the great inland sea of 
Central Africa. 

Of this, Pilkington writes : '* We coasted round 
the lake in a small sailing and rowing boat of the 
Mission, camping in our tents at night, or, indeed. 


owing to head winds, by day and sailing by moon- 
light. We had to leave most of our things behind 
pro tern., and still with three loads, five Europeans, 
men, boys, and sailors, we were all squashed like 
sardines in a box." 

The voyage was not without incident, and here 
we may quote the story told by Bishop Tucker. 
He says : — 

" We were sailing with a fair wind, but there 
were signs of a coming storm. The thunder was 
behind us, and dark clouds were crowding up ; the 
water was becoming disturbed. The boatmen 
thought it a good thing to spread the awning —a 
most dangerous thing to do under the circumstances. 
The main-sail, instead of being held loosely in the 
hand, was tied to the side of the boat. Hooper 
shouted, ' Loose the sheet ! ' but before the words 
were out of his mouth, the storm struck us. The 
boat heeled over in such a manner that it seemed 
utterly impossible she could right herself again ; 
but just at that moment, most providentially, the 
sail gave way, it split, and we were saved. Had it 
not done so, it is almost a matter of absolute cer- 
tainty we should all have gone down like a stone." 

Continuing his story the Bishop remarks : — 

"After paying a visit to Emin Pasha on the 
western shore, we approached the confines of the 
country of Uganda, and it was truly wonderful the 
evidence we saw, from day to day as we camped, 
of the intense desire of the people for Christian 
instruction. W' ithin a few minutes of our landing, 
quite a crowd came about, and those who had books 


would bring them and ask to be further instructed, 
whilst those who had none, begged and implored 
us to give them some. Mr. Pilkington, who was 
the only one able to speak the language of Uganda, 
would frequently have within a few minutes, quite a 
crowd round about him, who would be engaged in 
learning and repeating texts of Scripture ; and by 
simply giving notice that, in an hour or so, a service 
would be held, some fifty or more would come 
together for prayer, &c. Of course, all this filled us 
with great hope and increased our impatience to 
reach the capital. At length, after many delays 
caused by light and variable winds, on the twenty- 
third day of sailing, and on December 27th, we 
reached the capital. And how shall I tell of that 
warm welcome given to us by the Natives of the 
Church and by Brethren Walker and Gordon, who 
for so long have so nobly held the fort ? " 

" On Monday, December 29th,'' Bishop Tucker 
writes, " we paid our respects to the king in open 
court. At about half-past nine, a messenger came 
from the king to say that he was ready to see us. 
So, setting off, we reached the royal residence at 
about 10 a.m. Our party consisted of Messrs. 
Walker, Gordon, Pilkington, Baskerville, Smith, 
Hooper, and myself. Outside the palace, another 
messenger met us, his work being apparently to 
conduct us into the royal presence. I suppose he 
must have been the Chamberlain. As we came 
near the reed gate which separated us from the 
audience or reception room, drums were beaten and 
trumpets blown. The gate was immediately thrown 


open and we were in the presence of the king and 
his court. The former at once rose up to greet us, 
shaking each one by the hand. Our seats — for we 
had taken the precaution of bringing our chairs 
with us — were placed on the right hand of the 
king. He at once inquired about our journey and 
made various inquiries about our ages, &c., &c., at 
the same time making remarks as to the colour of 
our hair, our height, &c., &c. With regard to the 
king himself, his appearance is certainly not pre- 
possessing. The impression he gives one is that of 
his being a self-indulgent man. When he knits his 
brows, his aspect is very forbidding. During the 
whole of the time we were there, he kept giving his 
hand either to the Katikiro on his left hand or to 
the Admiral on his right, or to anyone who amused 
him and was near at hand. I had intended to 
bring with me one or two presents for the king — not 
on the old scale or principles, but as a simple 
acknowledgment of his courtesy in sending canoes 
to Usambiro for our goods. But his unfaithfulness 
in regard to his promise recoiled upon his own head. 
Thinking that the canoes would follow us from 
Usambiro in a few days, I left the presents for the 
king to be brought on later. No canoes appearing, 
no presents were forthcoming. I thought the king 
seemed quite angry with those about him who were 
responsible for the delay in the departure of the 
canoes. At any rate, he asked several very sharp 
questions with regard to the causes of the delay. 
The atmosphere of the reception-room was oppres- 
sively close, and so we were not sorry when the king 


rose up from his seat as the signal that his audience 
was at an end. Instead of retiring to the rear, as 
his custom is, he followed us to the front of the 
barraza, not merely, I think, as a matter of courtesy, 
but in order to inspect us a little more narrowly." 

Pilkington's early impressions of the position in 
Buganda are given in a letter to his friend, Mr. 

" C. M. S. Station, Uganda, 

January 4th, 1891. 

This is a wonderful country and a wonderful 
people ; war has ruined the country for the present ; 
the bananas, which, with sweet potatoes, form four- 
fifths of the food of the country, won't be bearing 
again, barring the few spared in the war a year ago, 
for two more years ; what with war and disease, 
there are hardly any cattle left ; in fact, we are only 
just now coming out of the famine. In spite of this 
we have been amply supplied, seven of us, and our 
' boys,' with bananas, sweet potatoes and meat from 
our native friends here, as presents, for which they 
expect no return in material things ; we live mainly 
on green bananas boiled. Three houses, in native 
style though of English cottage shape, have also 
been built to receive us ; we shall give the builders 
a present, but not the value of their work ; and very 
likely they are not expecting anything. So we 
needn't cost the C. M. Society much. The houses 
are built of a strong and tall grass cane dried in the 
sun, and tied firmly in regular lines with strips of 
bark (if you can call it so) of the banana tree ; the 


grass roof is supported by stems of a palm that grows 
here (no eatable fruit, however). The doors are 
made of the same as the walls, and are at present 
just leaned in the doorway. The windows are holes, 
over which we are putting blinds of native bark 
cloth. These houses keep out rain and sun, but not 
wind and cold ; however, I think them very com- 
fortable and pretty to look at ; the floor is earth 
beaten down, rather damp as yet. 

A thousand or more come to our service on 
Sunday ; half of these at least can read, though 
some would be only beginners ; the Church is over- 
crowded. On week days, 500 or so come to ' read ' 
(i.e. to worship and to be taught) from six to nine in 
the morning. The keenness to learn is incredible. 
Many, I believe, would keep it up all day long if 
you let them ; how far and in how many cases this 
is a sign of real Christianity in them, I can't say at 

The state of the country is still very unsettled, 
though much improved. There are five political 
parties in the country (to none of which do we, the 
white men, belong — politics are not our business) : — 
i. — The English Company, with Capt. Lugard at 
present at its head. He has not strength enough 
yet, or thinks he has not, to take a strong and 
decided course. ii. — The Roman Catholic Party, 
headed by the King and half the big Chiefs. The 
Kmg hates and fears the first and following party, 
iii. — The Protestant Party, headed by the biggest 
and wealthiest of the Chiefs, the ' Katikiro,' and 
the remaining Chiefs. iv. — The Heathen party 


which is not a party, but the great majority of the 
population, who have lost nearly all political power. 
V. — The Mohammedan party, which is no longer in 
this country, but in the neighbouring and once 
subject State of Bunyoro, whither those who have 
not been killed have been driven. The Christian 
parties have all the guns, 2,000 each perhaps, hence 
their exclusive power. 

The people are like children, or like tinder, and 
the least excitement sets them in a blaze. The other 
morning they had come to Church here with their 
guns, of course, when a report got about that the 
Roman Catholics were about to attack — all a lie. 
Immediately, they all rushed out in tremendous 
excitement into the main road, and had the Roman 
Catholics had time to collect, they might have 
caused a fright. A night or two later, the Roman 
Catholics got a similar scare. All through the 
night they were assembling at the King's. In the 
morning, the Protestants gathered at the Katikiro's. 
They were at last calmed with great difficulty ; now 
each party has sent in to Captain Lugard a list of 
grievances against the other ; I hope he may settle 
them justly and wisely, and be able to have his 
decisions fairly carried out. 

This is a beautiful country, very hilly, covered 
with banana trees (our houses are in the middle of a 
banana ' shamba,' or garden, which is the Mission's), 
10 miles or so from the lake, and a good bit above 
its level, very healthy, we are told, for Africa ; we 
are just north of the Equator. 

This place is to my mind a fresh proof, or I should 


say, confirmation, of the living power of the Word 
of God ; it has turned the world upside down here. 
They are ready to pay as many cowries, 1,500, as 
would amply feed a man for two months, for a New 
Testament in Swahili ; of course, we don't give 
them awaw for many would take them only to sell 
them again ; and we are out of books at present, we 
can't supply the demand fast enough. 

My work here, if God lets me work here, is to 
be chiefly in the language; the four Gospels are 
nearly finished ; nothing else ; so plenty is left for 

Thus early, Pilkington was marked out for 
linguistic work, and in this connection the following 
letter from Bishop Tucker is of great interest, 
particularly as it refers to others who had already 
done splendid work in reducing Luganda to writing 
and producing the earliest translations : — 

" Buganda, 

Jan. 1 89 1. 

Mv. Dear Mr. Pilkington, 

It seems to me to be clearly pointed out 
by Him, who never leaves his Church without 
guidance and direction, that the special work to 
which you are called in Buganda, is translational 
and linguistic ; in entrusting to your care this 
important part of the vvork of the Mission, I do 
so with the utmost confidence, believing that the 
Word of God will have in you, one who, as a 
Christian, will handle it with holy reverence, and 
who, as a scholar, will translate it with accuracy. I 


am, however, not forgetful of the fact that at present 
you have scarcely done more than make a beginning 
with the language. I am, therefore, glad to know 
that you have, in Mr. Gordon, one who will greatlv 
assist you in your studies, and in every wa}' co- 
operate with you in your work. For some time to 
come you will naturally seek Mr. Gordon's help, and 
consult him in matters in which his experience and 
linguistic attainments will qualify him to express an 
opinion. He is at present engaged — as I dare say 
you know — in the completion of an important work 
commenced by Mr Mackay : this will, of course, 
remain in his hands until its passage through the 
press. After this, it is Mr. Gordon's own wish that 
the translational and linguistic part of the work 
should be placed in your hands. I am sure you 
may depend upon his hearty support and loyal 
co-operation in all that is undertaken for the Glory 
of God, in the spread of the knowledge of His word. 
This translational work will not, I am sure, prevent 
you from engaging as opportunity may present 
itself from time to time, in the more directly 
Spiritual work of the Mission, for this, you will place 
yourself at the disposal of those who have charge of 
that work. Praying that a great blessing may rest 
upon your labours, and that you may have health 
and strength given to you for all that you under- 
take, and that much joy and peace may fill your 
own soul. I remain. 

Ever yours in Christ, 
Most faithfully and affectionately, 

Alfred, Bishop, E. E. Africa." 


" P.S. — 1 cannot help thinking that one of the 
most useful pieces of linguistic work to which you 
can put your hand would be (as soon as you feel 
yourself qualified to undertake it) a simple Gram- 
mar. Its usefulness to those coming up country for 
the first time would be simply incalculable. I 
commend it earnestly to your attention." 

Early days in Buganda were not idle ones. 
Pilkington writes to his mother on 

January 3rd, 1 89 1. 

" We've had a lot to do, the houses to rig 
up, get the floor pounded down, get a trench dug 
round it to keep off the rain, rig up a shift for a 
table, etc., etc. Then I've had to set a Swahili 

paper, and shall have to look over it for , who 

is to be examined for orders, to be preparing Noah 
for confirmation, besides getting oneself and one's 
clothes washed, 'learning Luganda, etc., etc. 

Then, on Monday, we're to start classes for 
confirmation, about fifty candidates to be taken in 
Swahili by four of us. So I've plenty to do." 

Later on, writing to one of his sisters, he 
describes his surroundings as follows : — " I'm sitting 
on a native stool, cut out of solid wood. As my 
table, I have put my large tin writing desk on my 
native bed (a strong wooden framework with a 
cowhide stretched tightly), my table is too high for 
the stool. On my right side against the wall is my 
camp bed, whose canvas is greatly torn in the 
middle, and which I use only as an untidy table to 
put tilings on. liy the way, one of the chiefs lent, 


and then gave, the native bedstead. Then comes a 
basin, supported on a four cross-legged stool made 
by my Muganda boy, Erasito ; intended to make a 
stool for myself, but unsatisfactory. Then I have a 
table behind me, strewn with books, standing on 
four legs that are fixed in the ground, and the top 
formed, like the walls of the houses, of the grass 
cane tied to the frame with strips of banana bark — 
this is only temporary. Over the windows and 
door I have curtains of bark cloth. On the pole 
which stands in the middle of the room and 
supports the roof, I have two bags of clothes 

Above my head I have a large package — a yard 
long, six inches in diameter — of native salt done up 
in banana leaves — salt is very scarce here. For this 
salt — 10 lbs., perhaps — I paid four 3ards of the 
miserable w^hite calico which is called cloth here ; 
this is equivalent to 20,000 cowries, or, as we say, 
20 strings, which, in normal times, would buy 40 
huge bunches of bananas, each with 100 or 200 
bananas on it ; or three fat goats or sheep ; 40 
strings would buy a cow. A string of shells costs 
us, including carriage, about a shilling." 



For some little time there was a cessation from 
those violent outbreaks of hostilities which had so 
often interrupted Missionary work, and though, to 
those who were familiar with the situation, it was 
evident that this was not likely to last, opportunity 
was afforded for considerable progress, especially in 
translational work, and on the part of the people in 
their desire for books. 

Pilkington felt the need of more books most 
keenly, and his letters about this time are full of 
schemes for expediting the production of books. 

On February 24th, 1891, 
He writes : — " In the loads came books, which 
went (at least the New Testaments)," — no doubt 
these were in Swahili — "like wild-fire at 1,000 
cowTies apiece ; 200 cowries buy ample food for a 
man for a week. Only 120 New Testaments or so 
came ; after a day and a half all had gone, and 
many people had to be sent away disappointed. 
We want thousands of books and hundreds of men. 

"February 25th, 1891, 4.30 p.m. 
I've just finished a spell of writing translation; 
this is, of getting a Muganda who kno\\s Swahili to 



translate from that language into Liiganda. I am 
doing the Acts in this way, every morning, for three 
hours, with Henry V.'right Duta, the most educated 
of our people. In the afternoon, I am doing some 
Bible stories from Swahili. These translations won't 
be perfect when they are done, but I think they 
will be correct and intelligible, and the need of 
Luganda books is most pressing. Matthew, and 
an abridged prayer-book, and a reading sheet with 
the Commandments and Lord's prayer, are the only 
Luganda publications we have or have had, for as 
soon as we get any they go like the wind. . . . 
The four Gospels have been translated. Now to 
have them printed and sent here, there's the rub 1 
We got the other day the first copies of Matthew 
that reached Uganda, and they were printed in '88, 
two or three years' delay. I can't imagine how it 
was, and the people here dying for books and ready 
to pay for them. Now what I want to do is this, 
only I want your help : I want friends at home to 
subscribe money to get these books printed, and 
want you, that is my family, to get them printed, 
and to look over the proofs, because you know my 
handwriting ; to have a proof out here means a 
delay of six months or so. Do you think you could 
manage this ? The need of native books is 
enormous. We should sell them here for cost of 
printing and carriage, and send the money home to 
get more printed. You, that is all you who are 
familiar with my writing, could look over the proofs 
more satisfactorily than anyone else. I've no doubt 
Father knows a good printer in Dublin. If I try to 


get them printed in any other way, I am sure it 
would only mean endless delay. Where each book 
had been thoroughly revised (and to do this printed 
copies here would be an immense help) I should 
send it to the Bible Society. But this wouldn't do 
at first, and we must have an immediate supply. 
The natives here are ready and fit to teach a great 
deal, only they want books. The first thing is to 
gather some money together. I shall write to a 
good many people, and I am sure this will be no 
difficulty. But still, if you would write to anyone 
who would like to help, it would be a great thing. 
I don't think you would find it either very difficult 
or very tedious looking over the proofs, because all 
you could do would be to compare them with my 
copy, original corrections you could'nt make. What 
do you say ? " 

"Sunday, March ist, 1891. 

I shall write more about the above matter when 
Gordon has come back from Busoga, and I have 
consulted him ; whether that will be before this letter 
goes (we expect him for Easter perhaps) or not, I 
can't say. I can't bear to think of delay of six months 
at least, perhaps a year, while the proofs could come 
and be sent back, when the people are so eager for 
books. At the same time, I don't wish to burden you 
at home ; however, I am sure that my sisters would 
think it a great privilege to have a part and a very 
important one in so grand a work. I believe that 
the results of having a Luganda Bible here would 
be amazing. 

The position of Uganda, within easy reach by 



steamer of all the country that fringes the lake, a 
central position too, in Africa, generally com- 
manding further the South end of the Nile valley, 
makes me think the events of the last dozen 
years : — Stanley's visit, the Missionaries coming, 
the great movement (whether you think of it as 
religious, intellectual, or political), the persecutions, 
the coming of the English Co., the death of 
Mackay, and Stanley's return to England (because 
of the interest in this country aroused by these two 
events), all these things coming together, seem to 
me in a most special way to be providential. In 
other words, I think all these things point to the 
fact that ' Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands 
unto God,' and that Uganda will be a great centre 
of light. 

Henry Wright Duta, whom I mentioned as my 
translator, is a very clever man. He might have 
been a big chief, Katikiro had he chosen, but he pre- 
ferred the position of a simple teacher ; others have 
made the same choice. 

We had the Lord's Supper in Church to-day. 
Captain Lugard (theoretically the King, but it was 
Captain L's advice that prevailed) has decided th^t 
the Sesse islands are to be divided as originally 
agreed between the Protestant and the Roman 
Catholic parties. The Roman Catholics have 
hitherto held them to the exclusion of all other 
parties ; this has been decided. When will it be 
carried out ? When that happy time comes we 
shall be able to get canoes for our loads from 
Usambiro. The canoes are now under the control 


of Roman Catholic chiefs and the King, who 
promises anything but performs nothing. 

We expect De Winton to afternoon tea to-morrow 
afternoon. I've undertaken to make the bread. I've 
made very fair bread from native materials lately ; 
rice, plantains, potatoes, milk, and pombe barm, but 
now I've got English flour, butter and cake, with 
raisins and currants, of which we have a few. So with 
translations, etc., I'll have a busy day to-morrow. So 
good night, it's 9.15 now." 

"Sunday, 8th March, 1891. 

We are getting canoes sent. We hope to-morrow to 
send to Usambiro for loads, so the letters are to start 
on Tuesday and catch the others up. The political 
state of the country is still very unsettled. Smith and 
Gordon are still in Busoga, at least, so we suppose, we 
have not heard of them since they crossed the Nile. 

With Henry Duta, I have now translated nearly 
half the Acts. I hope to send to the Bishop by this 
mail, short translations of Bible stories, Adam, 
Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Moses, Samson, Jonah, 
Nebuchadnezzar, etc., which would be very useful 
while we have no Old Testament in Luganda, and 
especially for teaching children both the Bible and 
reading. They have been translated by different 
natives who know Swahili. In another fortnight or 
so, I hope to finish the Acts, and in another month, 
perhaps, the Grammar which the Bishop suggested. 
All these things will, of course, at first, be very im- 
perfect, but I want the Grammar to be ready, if 
possible, to give what help it can to the 20 men the 
Bishop hopes to bring out soon. 


Do you know the picture leaflets which are pub- 
lished b} the Children's Special Service Mission ? I 
am going to write to Mr. Bishop to-morrow to ask 
whether he could get some in Luganda printed for us, 
and I mean to send him, in case he can do it for us, 
the story of Naaman with a few words in explanation 
of its typical meaning. The last part of Revelation 
VII., Psalms LI. i, 2, and 7, ist John, I. 7, and a 
hymn, of which this is a translation .... It is 
very doubtful whether the C. S. S. M. can under- 
take to do them, but I think it worth trying. The 
rains are on now, which makes it much cooler and 
pleasanter, to my mind. My boys, who came from 
Usambiro, are thriving fearfully here. One had 
dysentery when he first came, he was dangerously 
ill, nearly as bad as Edgar on the road (to 
whom I am writing by this mail). In both cases, 
ipecacuanha was successful. Now this boy, who 
was a skeleton, is as fat as ma}^ be ; so is Najibu, 
whom I hear in the next room practising ta, to, te, 
ta, to, te, from his reading sheet. He has the 
reputation of being the cleverest of the boys whom 
Stanley brought to Usambiro. The other boy 
who was ill, was Emin Pasha's, Erasito. My 
Muganda boy is 17 or so, and can read perfectly, 
and knows Swahili well ; he is the brother of the 
Katikiro, the ' Lord Chancellor,' as Ashe calls him 
in his book. Have you read it? 'Two Kings of 
Uganda.' The smallest of them is Kitera, who 
arrived here with the last mail. 

In writing to Mr. Bishop about the picture leaflets 
he says : " I have been thinking lately of the picture 


leaflets of the C. S. S. M., and wishing very much 
to get some for our people here (who would 
appreciate them immensely and buy them with 
shells) ; and wondering whether it would be possible 
to get some in Luganda 

I think this country has a particular claim on 
you, because the oldest of its people are only over- 
grown children." 

This request was gladly granted by the Children's 
Special Service Mission. 

"April 5th 1891. 

Nearly all the Waganda have gone out to fight 
the Mohammedans, who were ravaging, a week ago, 
only six hours' march from here. The Katikiro is 
' Mugate,' i.e., General, and Henry Duta is with 
him as his Secretary. Samwili (who went as a 
sort of Ambassador to the three Consuls, English, 
French and German at the coast, who has just 
come back), was to have taken Henry Duta's place 
in helping me, but he has fever. The Waganda have 
driven the Mohammedans off, they are retreating to 
their stronghold in or near Bunyoro, the Captains 
are soon to start with seven hundred men and two 
Maxim guns in pursuit ; they will offer them terms, 
and, if these be refused, will take their stronghold. 

The Acts, Henry and I finished a week ago, but 
I must still revise it. I am working hard at the 
grammar now, making voc:ibularies just at present. 
I hope to be able to send something in the way of a 
Grammar and general Handbook to the language in 
two months more, but I shall have to work hard. 
This might be ready to help the men coming out 


in the Autumn. I have written ten Luganda hymns 
to the tunes, and to some extent following the 
words of the following : ' Art thou weary ? ' ' There 
is a fountain,' ' There is life for a look,' ' Onward 
Christian Soldiers,' ' Look ye Saints,' ' I heard the 
voice of Jesus,' ' Grace, 'tis a charming sound,' ' I 
lay my sins on Jesus,' ' Just as I am.' I intend to 
send a copy of this to Deekes at Nassa ; he may be 
able to print us some. This, and Grammar, and 
translations, making bread, butter, and pancakes 
(you should see me toss them before a group of 
admiring black boys) have chiefly occupied me since 
I last wrote. 

Gordon is back from Busoga. Smith is still 
there. Walker went the other day to Budu, the 
Pokino's country, to make a start there. Kitera, 
my small boy, was Gordon's originally, so Gordon 
has taken him. He starts home in a month or two. 
I have an odd bit of black mortality in his place 
called Kisasiro, a very odd little boy. Nasitu told 
me to-day that one of Stanley's porters bought him 
for a doti, that is four yards of calico ; he seemed 
rather proud of having been worth so much. One of 
Walker's boys was bought for an old tin cannister ; 
to remind him of it is a favourite method of teasing 
him. I think he tries to make out it was a biscuit tin." 

"April 1 2th, 1 89 1. 

I've been particularly well lately, and accordingly 

my Grammar makes good progress ; the whole 

thing is to consist of grammar, syntax, notes on 

pronunciation, specimens of Luganda, especially 


conversations, Luganda-English Vocabulary, and 
English- Luganda ditto. I hope to finish it by the 
end of next month ; a good deal is done already. 

De Winton has asked us all to tea this afternoon. 
Lugard and Williams and the Doctor are out at the 
war ; no fighting yet. The enemy shewed some 
desire to fight before the English came up, but I 
expect they are retreating now. 

We have planted beans, Indian corn, guavas, 
pawpaws, lemons, peas, and radishes ; cabbages we 
have had several of lately. There are four fresh 
eggs on this table waiting for me to cook. I have 
made some excellent bread lately. A good deal of 
wheat has been planted, but not by us. The 
country is rapidly improving ; perfect quiet now and 
confidence in the English Company." 

In a letter to Mr. Martineau he remarks: — ''Sugar 
here is a great luxury ; we have some left, but only 
use it on great occasions. I daresay you look on 
saccharine with scornful eyes : but as articles cost 
about 2s. per lb. to bring up here, or sometimes 5s., 
lightness is a very valuable quality for us. The 
Society pays for our loads, but of course we all try 
to cut down expenses as much as possible (you see 
at the present moment we could find ample work for 
twenty Europeans here and this would cost, to 
bring them here, ^^5,000 at least) ; so there is every 
reason to economise : accordingly, I've only ordered 
saccharine for next year, a couple of little bottles. II 
you could tell me any simple process by which 
sugar-cane (which we grow, but not much, here) 
could be used for sweetening things, it would be 


very useful. Slicing it and putting it in hot water 
makes no earthly difference; I find : indeed, it's ol 
very little use to us. The people chew it lar^^ely, 
spitting out the fibre, but we don't care for it. 
We get honey from the South end of the lake 

With reference to the demand for books, Mr. 
Walker writes from 

" Namirembe, Buganda, 

March 9th, 1891. 

Just lately we sold 4,000 Luganda reading-sheets 
and about 200 Swahili New Testaments, as well as 
other books. The demand is very great for the 
New Testament, but Ezekiel and Jeremiah are not 
much cared for because they are not understood. 
Could you have sent up of the Luganda reading- 
sheets, 10,000 copies ; of St. Matthew in Luganda, 
3,000 copies ; of the Prayer-book in Luganda, 
3,000 copies ? I should like to ask for more, but 
the above will make 22|- loads. We do not intend 
to charge the actual cost-price here in Buganda 
necessarily, but so near to this that there should be 
no great loss on the books. For a Swahili New 
Testament we have charged the people 1,000 shells, 
and these we have sold for 3s. 6d. The book in 
England is sold for 2s. and weighs one pound. 
There must, therefore, be a small loss on each 
book, but it is only a small one. On the Luganda 
reading-sheets we have made a little profit, as we 
sell each for thirty shells. 

The French priests are here in great numbers 
and are very active. Surely many people in 


England, who cannot come to help us themselves, 
would like to help on the work by sending the Word 
of God here in its written form." 

Pilkington writes to Bishop Tucker on the same 
date — 

'*The other day the first instalment — only lOO or 
so — of the Luganda St. Matthew, which had been 
printed in England, arrived at last. We are 
naturally extremely anxious to get anything that we 
can manage to get translated, printed and sent back 
without loss of time. I have begun the attempt at 
a grammar which you recommended me to make, 
and in another month I expect to have ready what 
would, I think I can say, (though, of course, it 
would have many little faults and deficiencies) be a 
great help to new men coming out. I have got 
Natives to translate from Swahili (making use both 
of the Bible and the ' Picture Bible ' in Swahili) a 
good many Old Testament stories ; these are meant 
especially for teaching children, although, while we 
are without an Old Testament in Luganda, they 
would be also generally useful. Henry Duta and 
I have also begun and nearly done half of the 
Acts. In another month I hope this will be finished 
too. I believe we could dispose of 2,000 at least of 
any small book in Luganda at cost price. The 
books which have hitherto come have quite failed 
to satisfy the demand.. We ought to aim at having 
the books as small and hght as is consistent with 
good printing and binding, both in order to save 
cost in carriage and because the Waganda are far 


readier to buy a neat book and one which they can 
easily carry about with them, than anything large 
and clumsy. If you could see the eagerness of this 
people for books — I am glad to think you did see 
something of it — how they swarmed round us day 
and night while the books lasted and after they 
were all gone, and would not believe that there 
were no more New Testaments or St. ]\[atthews or 
reading-sheets to be had, you would be as anxious 
as we are to see them satisfied at last. Even the 
Roman Catholics buy our books. Even the sending 
out of more missionaries is, to my mind, at present 
scarcely so important. With native books, so 
many here are already capable of teaching a good 

The next letter tells of a visit to one of the 
islands rendered necessary by an attack of fever. 

" Island of Sowe, 

V. Nyanza, 

4th July, 1 89 1. 

I had an attack of fever for a week, and so De 
Winton asked me to come here for a change, which 
I did, and it has done me a lot of good, only, alas, 
we've missed the mail and my vocabulary is here. 
Capt. Williams assured me that the mail would pass 
here, but it did'nt. We are negotiating for a canoe, 
and I heartily hope we'll get one, but the prospect 
is dark. 

I've started the Galatians with Henry. Walker 
we expect back from Budu every day ; he wants 
Baskerville to go back to Budu with him,. We 


hope to have the Church started now, the new one, 
large enough to accommodate with comfort our 
large and increasing congregations. Smith is back 
in Busoga, Gordon on his way to England. We 
have had no mails yet, and so we don't know any 
more about Ashe's coming. The Waganda are 
tremendously fond of Ashe. 

I got fever going through a marsh on my way 
with Baskerville to the Mumenga, a big chief, who 
had had ulcers, and who refused to use medicine on 
the ground that God could cure him without. We 
did'nt know of this abominable marsh, and I had 
hardly reached the Mumenga's when fever came on, 
and I had to be carried back. The Mumenga still 
refused medicine, but agreed to use water for his 
ulcers. I have not heard since, except that the 
poor fellow has now got small pox ; but his faith is 
encouraging to see, even though we may think it 
mistaken in a way. 

We intend to go back to Mengo on Monday, 
and then I hope I shall get on with translation all 
the quicker and better for this rest, but if we can't 
send off these letters and my vocabulary, it will be 
a great disappointment. I should not have dreamt 
of coming here at such a sacrifice. 

De Winton has been shooting at hippos and 
crocodiles, which abound here ; we believe he killed 
one of the latter, he was hit and careered about, 
lashing his tail and showing his great jaws, but we 
could'nt actually get him. If we had a good boat's 
crew, we could get hippos, but our paddlers are 
afraid to go near enough ; they are hideous monsters, 


I have seen them quite close. We have wanted to 
shoot and eat some parrots, which abound here, how- 
ever we've been unsuccessful as yet. The butterflies 
are wonderful ; there are honeysuckers here, green 
and red and black; also a fine osprey. Mosquitoes are 
terrible, but De Winton's description of the same in 
Canada throw our mild experience into the shade." 

A letter to his mother, ten days later, speaks of 
another attack of fever, and in it he gives his opinion 
on a variety of topics. Of religious papers, he 
prefers The Christian, as he finds that it is not bitter. 
He adds : '' The Christian deserves its name." 

His order for articles of clothing and other things 
gives some idea of his views as to dress in the 
Tropics. It is evident that Jaeger boots must not be 
confounded with Jaeger slippers ! 

"14th July, 1 89 1. 

If you could order me a fairly decent suit of 
clothes, not too heavy, but fairly warm and large 
enough — I don't mind if they are a size or two 
too big ; but tight clothes in this country are an 
abomination. Also a couple of football sweaters — 
R. will tell you what they are — and a couple of 
Pyjama (is that right) suits, rather warmer than the 
last (which were just what I wanted, only I like 
warmer things now), and a few pairs of socks, a pair of 
slippers (leather wears better than Jaeger), and six 
pocket handkerchiefs. Could you get these things 
packed, and sent out to Boustead, Ridley and Co. ; 
also some rennet powder and baking soda." 

The doings of the next few months are well 


described in the following series of letters, some to 
Mr. Eugene Stock, and some to his mother :— 

" Namiiembe, Uganda, 

August nth, 1 89 1. 

The mail arrived this afternoon. I am alone (of 
our missionaries) here. 

BaskerviUe went to Budu, intending to come back 
for a while, at any rate, in a month. The month 
will be up in a week or ten days, but, m a letter 1 
cot from him on arrival at Masaka, he spoke of 
staying longer, as he would be delayed in visitmg 
Zekanya's place, because the p^tty kmg of Koki 
Kamswaga, had come into Budu, and, being jomed 
by the Roman Catholics, had burnt and destroyed 
several houses and gardens, including Zekanya's. 
I was alarmed by the first reports that reached us 
of this business : ' The Pokino killed ! Three of 
Walker's boys, whom he left at Masaka durmg 
his recent visit to this place, murdered ! This 
would have been terrible. Walker is very fond of 
his boys; so are we all, but Walker especially, per- 
haps. But, thank God, things were, as usual, 
immensely exaggerated. 

Now about things here. Politics (how I ha e 
them, but I suppose they are necessary evils.) 
hinder the work more than anything. When 1 
came back from the island of Sesse, after a week s 
change to try to shake off fever, the country- was 
terribly excited: we all of us (Walker and 
BaskerviUe were here then) really apprehended war, 
or at any rate, that the Protestants would leave the 


country. This was caused by a proposal from 
Captain Williams to abolish the agreement made 
between the two parties, and to permit chiefs (all 
of whom now hold office qua Protestant or Roman 
Catholic, appointed by one or other party) who 
change their religion to retain their chieftainships. 
We should, of course, be delighted to see full 
religious liberty, but the people do not understand 
it, and the Protestant party was very resolute 
against accepting the proposal ; this was because, 
whereas the Roman Catholics, in the choice of their 
chiefs, had been guided by the priests, and had 
appointed consistently the most thorough-going 
Roman Catholics, our party, on the other hand, 
were guided by general, at least as much as by 
religious, considerations (e.g. hereditary claims, 
fitness other than religious) — Gordon and Walker 
refusing to choose the chiefs. Well, the other day, 
the Roman Catholic Bishop claimed ' religious 
liberty ' from Captam Williams, on the ground that 
the country was under the British flag ; our party 
answered that if that were the case, and we were 
really under British government and therefore we 
could have British justice, let Captain Williams 
hoist the English flag, and let us follow British 
customs ; he tried to do so, but the attempt did not 
succeed, the Roman Catholics and the king refusing 

Well, this, and the division of the islands, and the 
innumerable cases of men turned out of gardens, 
houses destroyed, goods stolen, &c., &c., has 
occupied every one for weeks past. At first, the 


church was empty on week-day mornings, but a 
day or two after Walker and Baskerville went, 
I made a round of visits to various chiefs, urging 
them to be patient and aim at ' peace at any 
price,' and to come and bring their people in the 
mornings. Since then we have always had fair 
and sometimes very large (500 or 600) congregations 
— on weekdays, I mean ; on Sundays, the church 
is crowded out. During this time I have started 
giving them Bishop Ryle on St. Matthew every 
morning after the ' reading ' is over ; the ' reading ' 
means that the people are divided into classes, 
each with a leader, who translate the Swahili 
of various books of the New Testament into 
Luganda, with exposition (as far as they are able). 
When I come into church after my breakfast, 
between seven and eight o'clock, I attach myself to 
the senior class, of which Henry Wright Duta is the 
leader (when he is here ; he has just gone off to a 
garden lately received). My arrival is the signal for 
the class to turn from St. Matthew to Romans, which 
we read and translate. Someone first reads it in 
Swahili, the reader then reads it clause by clause, 
and the fir>t reader translates into Luganda, cor- 
rected by the leader. Then they appeal to me for 
explanation, which I attempt to give, but most of 
them find Romans ' kizibu nyo ' (extremely hard). 

Ten days ago, Duta and Sembera came to me on 
a Sunday to say they could not preach in church 
(I generally preach at one Sunday service, and one 
of the six who have the Bishop's license at the other) ; 
they had ' not been taught to preach ; what was the 


good of preaching if they had not proper words to 
preach ? ' To tell you the truth, I think them quite 
fit to preach, but I did not say so exactly (though 
I showed it by still asking Henry to preach as 
arranged that afternoon, and Sembera the next 
Sunday), but told them that a knowledge of one's 
own ignorance is the beginning of knowledge (and if 
Socrates is to be trusted, the end, too), and we 
arranged an afternoon daily class for these two and 
Johana Mwira, to which also Nataneli Mudeka came, 
a very nice young fellow, just made a church elder. 
These meetings are rather handicapped by politics 
just now, and by Henry's departure to the country. 
We started on Romans again ; the first eight verses 
of chapter iii. were a terrible puzzle. They could 
not grasp them, so we left them for the next day ; I 
in the meanwhile to make a Luganda translation, 
much amplified and simplified, which I did with the 
help of Conybeare and Howson, and I believe they 
understood them the next day. 

I started translating Galatians two months ago 
with Henry : fever and politics interrupted me, after 
finishing the first chapter, till to-day. To-day 
Sembera and I started again. I am translating 
Genesis with Noah (here called Nuwa), who came 
with us from the coast. These thino's, and looking 
after the boys and place, and visiting for an hour or 
two most afternoons, keep me very busy. I visited 
two of the Roman Catholic chiefs lately, who gave 
each a goat. I have since been given two more by 
the Roman Catholics, to the great delight of my 
boys, who eat the lion's share of it. 


\\ e have some melons coming on in our garden ; 
also wheat and potatoes ! We have great reason for 
thankfulness for the healthiness of this country, 
greatly owing, I believe, to the comparative variety 
and excellence of its food, and clean water. 

I have the names of thirty-six chiefs, who have 
offered to build for and feed a European residing at 
their place. I could easily add to this if I tried, but 
surely this is enough to show what is wanted. At 
most of these places, a good number of the people 
have already learnt, or are learning, to read. The 
outlay would be (the missionary once in the country) 
next to nothing, and who can estimate the returns ? 
The Baganda have already begun to go out to preach 
in other countries (in Busoga and Usukuma). J 
believe that, with God's blessing, this ought to be 
the centre of African Christianity, sending the 
messengers of peace east and west, north and south. 
We have here, I believe, the fulcrum by means of 
which to work Africa (and is it not Archimedes who 
could move the whole earth, if only he had a 
fulcrum ?), but the lever must, in the first instance, 
be Europeans, men of God, who do not mind being 
used as levers in Africa or elsewhere in God's hands. 
— I wrote, ' who do not mind,' but when I read it, 
it sounds almost blasphemous ; ' not mind ' being 
in God's hands for His work ! Could there be a 
safer, a happier position ? Could there be a greater 
privilege ? " 

" September 14th, 1891. 

A long time has passed since I began this letter, 
and a lot of things have happened. News came 



yesterday from Captain Lugard, and the Company 
are sending a mail to-day, so I must wind up as 
shortly as possible. 

On the day after I wrote the beginning of this 
letter, I saw, in the Intelligencer, that Ashe was 
translating Genesis ; so I left the eight chapters I 
had done, and w^ent on to Exodus. I hope to send 
by this mail, and indeed with this letter, the 
Galatians ; I hav3 no time to write to Gordon or 
the Bishop. I also enclose a table of Luganda 
concords, which I hope will be printed soon, and a 
few copies sent to us here. 

Smith is here now ; he was ill on the road. 
Captain Williams was extremely kind in fetching 
him, also in visiting me w^hen I had a week of fever, 
a fortnight ago. Baskerville has had fever three 
times in Budu. My last was my twentieth attack in 
fifteen months. Smith brings a much more 
encouraging account of work in Busoga ; I hope one 
of the new men will go there till Ashe's coming 
(which we expect in about a month — he is due at the 
south of the Lake to-morrow). Smith is going to a 
place on the Busoga road near the Nile, and there- 
fore in the Buganda province of Kyagwe — about 
three day's from here ; they have offered to build 
him a church there. The elders are choosing four 
Waganda Christians to go with him and occupy 
this place and three others, all within three or four 
hours of each other. Smith will superintend, going 
from one to the other. I hope to have a sort of 
dismissal service before they all start. Smith now 
says the people of Busoga are anxious to learn, and 


friendly, and even Wakoli is friendly. The Church 
agrees to support entirely the Waganda working in 
Buganda. When Ashe comes, I hope it will be 
possible to do the same as in Kyagwe in the country 
between this and Budu, the provinces of the Katam- 
bala, Kasuju, and Kayima. There will then be left 
the province of Singo, and with it that of the 
Kitunzi, and the province of Bulemezi : these two 
provinces are to the north, and have no lake-shore, 
and are therefore most exposed to the Mohammedan 
attacks, and, at present, are not thickly peopled. Four 
more men are needed for them. Suppose six men 
come in a month, we might have three in Budu 
(Walker and Baskerville have their hearts set on 
Budu), one in Katambala's country, three in Mengo, 
one in Kyagwe, two in Busoga. Sesse should be 
occupied. We ought to have twenty men. 
Kavirondo might be occupied soon ; Smith is 
longing to go there." 

Later in the same day, he writes to his mother : — 
*' This morning, two Waganda came to me to offer 
to teach in the Katambala's country ; two more for 
Bulemezi. These were men selected by the church 
elders. They are looking out men for Singo. Praise 
God ! They have been clearly told to expect no 
wages except from God. They are to be fed, housed, 
and clothed at the expense of the Church here. 
There are besides four men for Kyagwe, where Smith 
goes in a few days. But we must have Europeans 
to superintend. Baskerville has had three attacks 
of fever in Budu. I had my twentieth dose a 
fortnight ago ; now I am looking, everyone says, and 


feeling better than I have been since my fever at the 
coast. Any amount of work to be done. Every 
morning, if I can manage it, I teach in the church. 
Deekes has printed ten of my hymns, and I am 
teaching them these. I visit a great deal and am 
received with the greatest kindness and hospitality 
by all. The other day, I went to the king to ask 
for canoes. On his promise of thirty, I sent nine 
cakes of Pears' unscented soap and about two 
pounds of the commonest washing soap — this as an 
earnest of what would come if our thirty canoes 
really appeared. To-day, he sent me down ten 
magnificent bunches of plantains, weighing, I 
suppose, 3cwt., and a magnificent fat sheep (in the 
last few days, by-the-bye, the leopards have taken a 
goat, a kid, and a sheep of ours). The sheep must 
have had 2lb. of fat (splendid for frying) in its tail. 
I shall boil it down and bottle it. I have quantities 
of milk and butter. I have bought up cows in 
expectation of Ashe and his party. Every European 
in this country should have a cow. You might send 
me a small box of very strongly scented soap, also 
some intensely powerful scent. With two such 
cakes of soap I could buy a cow. ... I want 
maps of Bible countries, Africa, and large pictures 
for hanging up ; all for teaching a large number at 
the same time. Oh ! for a magic lantern. Ashe is 
due at Nassa to-morrow. One of the chiefs began 
his house to-day. My house has just been altered, 
and is now most comfortable and healthy. . . . 
I am drinking tea and eati ng Indian meal 
bread — while de Winton smokes (alasl he goes 


to join Lugard to-morrow). Emin has dodged 

past to Wadelai, after ivory no doubt 

I have several new boys now, one of them the 
naughty httle Bobby Kayinga, mentioned in ' Two 
Kings of Uganda.' Ashe to come in a month. I am 
very well indeed." 

" Namirembe, 

8th October, 1891. 

I'm by myself still, as I have been since July 
20th, but for Smith's short visit. I have a kind of 
kitten (a ' mondo ' — it will be nearly as big as a 
leopard), three grey parrots (which I have been 
given and have passed on to my boys), and a 
monkey, with which the boys are playing now in 
in this room. He is a great delight to them, most 
human and ridiculous, awfully afraid of me, but 
bites the boys ; desperately fond of sugar-cane. 

I have been teaching the hymns which I have 
written, and reading Jeremiah, in church, with some 
of our people. I have written to Mr. Stock, pointing 
out how absurdly few we are in this country for the 
vast work there is to be done 

Our potatoes are doing well. I enclose a copy 
written by Mackay, probably a good many years ago, 
when he was at Natete ; also a letter written to me 
by the Mugasi, the chief of the soldiers, a Roman 
Catholic, in which he calls me Pere Kitene, being 
accustomed to Peres among the French priests; 
also a letter written in the King's name for him, by 
the same chief, asking for paraffin oil, the first in 
Swahili, the second in Luganda. Observe the 


Royal signature, 'Kataka Mwanga' (King Mwanga); 
also a letter from Sembera Mackay, a most excellent 

This climate is not perfection. I call no climate 
perfect wherein, if you stand outside for five minutes 
while sun is shining, with double felt hat on and 
umbrella up, at any time between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., 
you feel (if you are G.L.P., or like him) the effects 
of it for an hour afterwards in faintness and head- 
ache. . . . You might just as well be in a 
Turkish bath all day as to be here, or, rather, a 
great deal better, for here decency demands clothes. 
It's a grand farming climate I've no doubt, damp 
and broiling." 

For some time Pilkington had been feeling 
urgently the need of more workers. This is summed 
up in a letter to Mr. Eugene Stock. 

" Namirembe, Mengo, Uganda, 

October 2nd, 1890. 

I sit down to utilize a few moments this evening 
by writing, in the hope that I may be able to say 
something that may show people in England how 
much we want men here. You see I write in the 
hope that you will be able to find something in this 
letter which, if put into any of your papers, might 
induce some at home to come to the help of the 
Lord against the mighty. 

And let me first say that for more than ten weeks 
I have been here now by myself, except for Smith's 
short visit, which lasted a fortnight only, and he 
was half an invalid. People may blame us for 


leaving one man (and he not in orders) here alone 
for so long. But, in the first place, Baskerville was 
to have come back in a month, but was hindered 
by fever, &c. Secondly, how can we stand by and 
see the whole country occupied by the Roman 
Catholic priests (there are eleven of them, besides 
^frcres,'' I believe ; and ten or fourteen coming), 
especially when a previous occupation is a ground 
which the Company wdll recognize for refusing 
permission to the opposite party to go into any 
territory ? 

At the same time, 'here am I alone here, with 
work enough ready to hand for ten men in England, 
not to say here, where hitherto about one day out 
of every four is lost owing to fever, and the remain- 
ing three none the better in consequence. We 
have every morning in our church from lOO to 300 
eager learners, for three hours, from 6 or 7 a.m. to 
g or 10 a.m. Most of the teaching is done by 
Natives ; I drop in for an hour or so (and they are 
grateful for this) towards the end ; with my other 
work I can't do more. I am reading Jeremiah with 
them now, some of them only. If we had, say, a 
couple of Europeans, with time enough at their 
disposal to prepare the morning's lesson thoroughly, 
and to wind up with a general address, I have no 
hesitation in saying that these numbers would be 
doubled. After this school and service is over, I 
am translating each morning till mid-day Romans 
with Henry Duta ; then, after a hasty meal, I sing 
with all the boys who care to come (teaching the 
adults to sing I have given up as hopeless, so have 


the French priests) ; I am teaching them hymns I 
have written, and which Deekes very kindly printed 
at Nassa. In the afternoon, I translate Exodus 
(two-thirds are done) with Noah. In the cool of 
the day I visit, and this is, perhaps, the pleasantest 
work on3 could have ; everywhere I meet with the 
warmest welcome. I visit Protestants and Roman 
Catholics alike. Yesterday, the Kimbugwe, the 
biggest of the Roman Catholic chiefs, gave me 
* bugenyi,' or a guest-present of a goat ; the second 
he has given me. In all this work I feel as if an 
ocean lay before me to be crossed, and I were 
paddling on the edge of it. 

Let me put down what I think we really want, 
and I don't want to exaggerate in the least. I put 
down so many men for each sort of work, not that 
one man would be confined to any one work, but 
merely expressing by the number of men the amount 
of work urgently needing doing : — 

For Mengo — 

Services on Sunday, class for 

teachers, and communicants' class i 
Class for catechumens and teaching 

daily in church ... ... ... i 

Visiting and teaching in houses ... i 
Doctor's work, accounts, &c ... i 

Translation ... ... ... ... i 

Itinerating in the neighbourhood 

within two days ... ... ... i (? 3) 

Substitute in case of fever either at 

Mengo or in the country ... ... i 

Total for capital ... 7 










Islands ... 

. 2 

. 2 

• 3 
. I 
. I 
. I 

. I (? 2) 

Total for elsewhere . 

. 12 

Grand total ... 

.. ig 

Now in Uganda 


.. 4 
.. 6 

Extra men urgently needed . 


.. 9" 

The above figures might easily be revised and 
largely added to in view of recent developments. 
It is, however, exceedingly interesting to notice 
the careful way in which Pilkington planned out 
the field, as he often did later on, in view of the 
needs of the time. Commenting on these figures 
he continues : — 

" This is without counting Koki and the countries 
to the north, or Kikuyu, &c., to the east. Besides, 
the Committee ought to send an extra number of 
men here, in view of illness and consequent early 
returns home, and deaths. Walker, I expect, will 
have gone by the time the next lot of men after 
Ashe comes. 


The expenses, once a man gets here, are next to 
nothing ; the eagerness for learning is the most 
remarkable thing I have ever seen or heard of in 
that line. 

This country has had hitherto, since the work 
was started, possibly an average of one Protestant 
European with a knowledge of the language ; one 
book only of the Bible, St. Matthew, has been hitherto 
put into the hands of the Natives in their own 
language, and yet God has used such very small 
efforts in an amazing way, so much so that I fully 
believe that if a number of missionaries at all 
approaching what this country has a right to expect, 
considering what these men have borne for Christ's 
sake, and their eagerness to be taught, and their 
readiness to welcome and support teachers — if this 
were done, I believe we should soon have Waganda 
missionaries working throughout Central Africa. 
To occupy completely this country now is to put 
out the resources of the Society at loo per cent, 
interest ; to miss the opportunity of doing so is to 
allow this country, and with it, perhaps, the whole 
of Central Africa, to become (God forbid !) Roman 
Catholic. I remind you that I have the names of 
39 chiefs (and if I tried I daresay I could make it 
lOo) who are ready and anxious to support with 
native food and build for a missionary. Having 
eased my mind by writing this letter, which I hope 
you will believe keeps clearly on the near side of 
exaggeration, although I am an Irishman, I'll stop 
for to-night. No more news of Ashe ; Baskerville 


"Sunday, October 4th, 1891. 

It is about twelve o'clock, and I am just out 
from church, where Henry Duta preached an 
excellent sermon to our usual congregation of a 
thousand or so ; ' the roaring lion conquered by, 
and to be conquered through, Jesus alone.' I write 
now, just while I feel strongly what the sight of 
that congregation and the hearing of Henry Wright 
Duta's sermon roused in me. 

I am astonished that more men haven't come 
here, considering the opportunities. Where are all 
the Christian men I knew at Cambridge ? I look 
for their names in every mail, but they are few and 

far between. Why don't men such as Mr. "' 

[here Pilkington mentions several well-known 
Evangelical clergymen] ? " They would find here as 
fine a field for work as in the whole world. Our work 
here is the evangelization of Africa, aud how can 
we, young and inexperienced as we are, take proper 
charge and direction of a work so difficult and so 
vast ? When I think of myself here by myself, with 
a large church, needing teaching and guiding and 
correcting, with hundreds reading daily and bring- 
ing all their ' knots ' to be ' untied ' to me, with 
marriage difficulties naturally arising in a country 
just reclaimed from heathenism, and then think of 
all England's resources for Christian teaching, it 
does seem, I was going to say, ridiculous, but I 
would rather say, a cause of wonder, and shame, 
and tears. 

The two facts that impress me most strongly in 
this country are, the smallness of England's efforts 


for this country, and the greatness of what God has 
been pleased to do in spite of it. Why, if Spurgeon 
or Moody were to come here, they would soon have 
audiences of immortal souls (faces black, no doubt, 
if that makes any difference) as large as any they 
address in England or America, and more receptive, 
and less hardened, and far more grateful. 

I had hoped that the example of Mr. A. O. 
Williams, a vicar in Leeds, who went out to China, 
would have been largely followed. To tell you the 
truth, I was thinking the other day of writing 

myself to Mr. " (one of the clergyman Mr. 

Pilkington had mentioned above), "and suggesting 
that he should come here ; but perhaps that would 
seem to him a piece of interference and impertinence. 
But all the same, I can't but believe it would be a 
cause of rejoicing to the Church on earth, and to 
God in heaven, if he, and such as he, did come. 

There are several of these Waganda now, who 
are fit, with a little systematic teaching, to go' out 
as missionaries far and wide. What we want is 
that (i.) these men should receive the teaching they 
need, and (ii.) that the whole spiritual tone of the 
Church here should be so raised as to press out 
these its best men to far countries. If there is any 
truth about Missions which all parties accept as an 
axiom, it is ' Africans for Africa,' and here are men 
all but ready to supply this long-felt need ; and 
what makes it more urgent still, is that, if these men 
are not soon working for us, or rather for the 
Gospel, they will be against the Gospel in the ranks 
of Roman Catholicism. Of course, in this last 


sentence I refer to the Waganda generally, not to 
the few to whom I referred above." 

Thus for the greater part of i8gi the mission 
work at the capital was carried on with only 
temporary interruptions, due to political difhculties. 
Meanwhile, events were being enacted in other 
places which have had a profound bearing upon the 
subsequent history of Uganda. 

Captain Lugard, upon whom lay the onerous task 
of administering the government of the Uganda 
district, as the representative of the British East 
Africa Company, found himself severely handi- 
capped, owing to the want of suitable soldiers. 

At the same time, he knew that there was within 
no great distance from Uganda, and within the 
territory which had been secured for British influence, 
a large body of Sudanese under the command of 
Selim Bey, who had formerly been in the service of 
Emin Pasha, and who had been left behind when 
Mr. Stanley's expedition started for the coast. 

Not only did Captain Lugard feel that they might 
form a valuable acquisition to his fighting force, but 
he considered that it was absolutely necessary to do 
something to provide for these men, who, if left to 
themselves, might prove a source of great danger 
within the British sphere. 

He therefore entered into negotiations with Selim 
Bey, whom he met at Ravalli's on Lake Albert Ny- 
anza, and eventually came to an arrangement with 
him, by which he and his men were to serve under 
Captain Lugard, provided permission were accorded 
by the Khedive, as he regarded himself as pledged 


to continue in the service of the Khedive, and he 
refused to enter into any binding contract without 
leave from him. 

Another difficulty arose from the fact that Selim 
Bey, as Captain Lugard tells us, " w^ished to 
stipulate that he should remain in absolute control 
of his men." This, however, could not be allowed, 
and eventually '' Selim had to give in." 

The number of Sudanese left in Selim Bey's force 
was about 600 fighting men. 

Of these, some were distributed throughout a chain 
of forts established on the border of Unyoro, whilst 
others were brought on to Uganda for garrison duty 

On his return to Uganda, Captain Lugard found 
heavy news awaiting him, to the effect that the 
British East Africa Company had decided to with- 
draw from Uganda. 

To be obliged to repudiate the solemn treaties 
which had just been concluded, and to abandon the 
country to anarchy, was felt by those carrying on 
the government in Uganda to be as dishonourable 
as it would be disastrous, and, happily, the matter 
presented itself in that light to people at home. 
Missionaries had not sought the protection of the 
arm of flesh, but now that a civilised government 
had undertaken responsibilities with regard to the 
country, it was felt that it could not so lightly 
dismiss them. 

Bishop Tucker was in England at the time, and 
lo st no opportunity of representing the true state of 
the case, and much sympathy was aroused, and the 


conscience of England was touched. It was, how- 
ever, given to the friends of the Church Missionary 
Society to afford more practical proof of their sym- 
pathy than mere paper resolutions, and when, on 
October 30th, i8gi, Bishop Tucker had told his 
story at the annual meeting of the Gleaners' Union 
a fund was started by the friends of the CT^LS. 
gathered at that meeting, though not officially 
connected with the Societ}^, which produced a sum 
of no less than ;fi6,ooo. This, with a sum of 
;f 20,000 contributed by the Directors of the Imperial 
British East Africa Company and their friends, 
enabled them to continue the occupation of Uganda 
for another year, the British name was saved from 
what would have been lasting disgrace, and one 
more step was taken towards the consolidation of 
that part of the British Empire, which lies in 
Eastern Equatorial Africa. 



" We are living on a volcano," writes the Rev. G. 
K. Baskerville in his journal on December 4th, 
i8gi — " the whole country is in a ferment. The 
Roman Catholics started all the trouble by sending 
men to destroy the Melondo's place in Kyagwe. 
He is one of our biggest and most respected chiefs. 
Wisely, he, before taking any hasty measures, went 
to consult Captain Williams, who told him to go 
and defend his property. Accordingly yesterday he 
went, and the king (i.e. the Roman Catholics) has sent 
four Roman Catholic chiefs after him to kill him ! 
Here our friend Mwanga has put his foot into it, 
and deserves no mercy at the hands of the 
Company. Well, Williams went to the king and 
told him that unless he sent counter-orders to stop 
these men he would fight with him. Our people 
have acted nobly and kept from violence ; we went 
to see one chief who was for fighting at once, but 
he promised to refrain out of respect to our opinion 
and advice. If the Protestants throw themselves 
upon the Captain and do nothing rash, they will 
win; but if they act independently they will lose. 
They are now waiting to hear from the messengers 



sent after the chiefs who had gone to fight the 
Melondo. If he has been killed there will be war, 
and it will mean the expulsion of the Roman 
Catholic party, for Williams will aid the Protestants 
as being the aggrieved party. To-morrow will 
bring us news. If there is fighting we are to go up 
to the camp, leaving only one of our number here 
to protect the property. Our going will show the 
people that we have no wish to meddle. Pilkington, 
knowing the language and people, will stop if it is 
necessary for us to go. Dear plucky old Sembera 
Mackay, he has visited the king when no one else 
would go ! He has gone unarmed. One of the big 
Roman Catholic chiefs ordered his men to fire on 
him, but no one dared to do so, and he walked past 
all into the king's enclosure. Then he went to see the 
Kimbugwe, the chief of the Roman Catholic party, 
and got him to call in his men ; he then went to the 
camp. Captain Williams has been this evening, 
and expressed himself greatly pleased with the 
conduct of the Protestants. Being prohibited 
from walking out, we spent an hour in sowing 
vegetable-seeds in our garden. ' In Jesus' keeping 
we are safe and they.' Good-night. 

" Dec. 5th. — The morning rose tumultuous ; 
murmurs of war and incessant noise and parading 
of men. Of course no work could be done. About 
noon we could hear the Mujasi's war-drums. He is 
a Roman Catholic, and was the first on a former 
occasion to commence ; then, he pleaded drunken- 
ness as an excuse. Our people have behaved 
grandly. They have taken no step without the 


Captain's permission. One chief of ours was on 
his way quietly home at about four o'clock, when 
we, from our garden where we were walking, 
saw a Roman Catholic chief fire four times on his 
men. One man was clubbed in the jaw, and a 
general melee seemed unavoidable. The people, 
however, saw the folly of leaving the immediate 
vicinity of the capital to avenge a petty insult, and 
resolved to wait till Williams could be consulted. 
My man, Tito, was asked to go off to the camp, 
which he did, and saw the Captain. The Roman 
Catholic chief is to send his guns to the camp. 
But the people are still waiting news of Melondo's 
fate ; this will bring matters to a crisis. If he is 
killed, nothing, it would seem, can avert terrible 
war. We hear that Martin has crossed the Nile, 
and should therefore be here by Wednesday. We 
can have no public services to-morrow, for it would 
never do for the people to assemble as a body." 

The next letter from Pilkington, written on 
December 7th, 1891, shows how, amid all the 
turmoil, the work steadily progressed. 

" We have just avoided war by the skin of our 
teeth for the third or fourth time. I am thankful 
to say the provocation (as Captain Williams 
admitted) was mainly, if not entirely, on the Roman 
Catholic side this time. Had there been war. Captain 
Williams would have helped the Protestants. 

Till this disturbance, our work was going on, to 
all external appearance, splendidly, ten or twelve 
classes each morning (Roscoe was able to start one 
with Sembera's help, in Swahili, as soon as he 


came), and between 500 and 700 people in church 
each morning, then a class for teachers and others 
at 2 p.m. for Pilgrim's Progress. I had sixty people 
(twelve boys, the rest adults) who want to be 
baptized. I hope some of these will be baptized 
next Sunday. The intelligence and the earnestness 
of some of them, and of others who were baptized 
a fortnight ago, has struck me very much, and given 
me great encouragement and pleasure, not for their 
own sakes only, but because, being all pupils of our 
elders, their clear knowledge in many cases of 
Gospel truth, and evident earnestness, are the 
surest evidence of the fitness of those who taught 
them. I wish I could send you in full some of 
Henry's sermons. Some of them have been logical 
forcible, interesting Scriptural explanations of the 
work of Christ for sinners. He is a very able man ; 
he would be above the average in Europe. I doubt 
that he has his equal in ability in Africa. How far 
his superiority is due to the Universities' Mission 
(he was with them at Zanzibar), I do not know ; 
but certainly his sermons are compositions, not 
rambling discourses, and are delivered admirably. 
Ephesians and Philippians, and some of 
Colossians and i Timothy, I have translated with 
Henry and Sembera ; I am waiting to finish 
Genesis and Exodus, in order to get all the 
New Testament done first. If that could be 
printed and sent out quickly we would thoroughly 
revise it. I want to get time for studying the 
language more thoroughly than I have yet been 
able to do ; perhaps I may be able to succeed in 


this when Ashe comes, of whom we know only that 
he left Usambiro about a month ago. I hope to 
enclose two grammatical sheets which I have made, 
and which Collins has copied two or three times, so 
that the men have a sort of substitute for a 
grammar. Martin's caravan is expected in two 
days ; Captain Lugard by Christmas. 

Oh, for books and reading-sheets ! and slates and 
slate-pencils ! and men ! It is delightful beginning 
to be able to teach these people who are so eager to 
learn, not by pouring a flood of wisdom over them, 
as one might pump water on a duck's back, but 
by question and answer (teaching, when one has 
anything worth knowing to teach, is the noblest 
calling in the world). To preach in a language is 
easy comparatively, but to teach in it — but, till 
one can do that, it is not much good. But are 
there not many in England who love teaching, 
and, above all, teaching the truth of God, who have 
but little scope at home ? They would find a field 
here, teaching young, teaching old, teaching 
morning, noon, and night ; and oh, so warmly 
appreciated, so attentively listened to, so gratefully 
remembered as Mackay, and O'Flaherty, and Ashe, 
and Gordon are." 

"December 14th, 1891. 

Mail goes to-morrow; I have addressed Ephesians, 
Philippians, Colossians, and my two sheets to you. 

Henry, in preaching yesterday on the loaves and 
fishes, said that, really, for those who think, the 
growth of the plantains on the tree is just as 


wonderful ; ' fools say it grows, because, I suppose, 
it is its nature ' ; but really it is a miracle. And, 
if a miracle is a thing which we cannot in the 
least understand, he was right, and I believe that 
this thought was original on his part. 

Forty - seven persons — thirty - three men, four 
women, and ten boys — were baptized yesterday. I 
had had classes for them for some time, and finally 
examined each one separately (six I told to wait till 
I could teach them further) ; the forty-seven seemed 
to me to have an intelligent trust in Christ as their 
own Saviour, and an honest desire to lead a new life 
by His help : pray for them especially, and for us. 

The 'Nalinya' (queen-sister) brought four girls 
yesterday, whom she asked me to prepare for 
baptism. I am wondering whether Henry's wife 
could help in this work ; it shows that ladies are 
wanted here." 

The next development of the political situation 
is described in private letter from Pilkington. 

" Namirembe, Mengo, 

December 27th, 1891. 

I am writing to-day (the anniversary of our 
arrival in Buganda) to tell you, while I remember 
clearly, some events of this morning which will 
interest you. This morning .... about 6.30 

a.m I heard Henry calling to one of 

my boys. I answered him, and, getting out of bed 
and putting on some clothes, called him in. He 
and Sembera, Samwili, Mika, and Stefano had 
come to tell me that the king wished to become a 


Protestant, having quarrelled with the Roman 
Catholics. I took them into Roscoe's house and 
we consulted about it. The king had sent them to 
us. We told them finally to tell the king that, in so 
far as the matter was a political one, it was none of 

our business We further advised them 

to do nothing till they had consulted with Captain 
Williams. We then had prayer with them and 
they went to Captain Williams. He, we hear, will 
not allow the king at present to become a 
Protestant, as it would, he says, mean war, and an 
alliance between the Roman Catholics and Moham- 
medans. We shall do nothing more in the matter 
at present. The king's proposal comes, I suppose, 
only from political motives. Really we have not 
much to do with it." 

" December 28th, 10.30 p.m. 
I am sitting up to-night till midnight, when 
Collins is to relieve me, and then Roscoe him, 
because threats of burning our houses down have 
been made by the Roman Catholics. Last night, 
their temporary Church was burnt down, we suppose 
most likely by some of the king's people, six of 
whose houses the Roman Catholics have lately 

burnt down, besides killing four men 

The Pokino has just been round to see our guard, 
and he brings the news that the king has returned 
to the Roman Catholic side, having received a 

present His people of the capital, 

thirty in number, have, however, determined to 

join the Protestant side It is a 

terrible pity that, at this critical time, we have not 


more men, and especially more men who know, if 

not Luganda, at least Swahili These 

houses, if fired once, burn, every scrap of them, like 
tinder, only more so ; hence our precautions. A 
chap can steal up and throw on a smouldering 
torch, and your first warning is the smell of smoke 
and the crackling of the fire, which is almost 

"January 20th, 1892. 
I ought to have told you how I 
went to the king, after the events I started with, 
and asked to see him alone, as I had things to 
speak of which I thought he would rather hear 
in private. He turned out all his chiefs, keeping 
one man only with him. I then explained what 
we thought of his proposed turning Protestant; 
I told him his soul was of no more value in our 
sight, or in God's, than the meanest of his subjects, 
and that we w^anted real, not nominal Protestants. 
I reminded him of his father Mutesa's opinion, that 
* the English had the truth.' I began this by 
saying, ' Your father, Mutesa, was a clever man,' 
to which he answered the single word, ' Kitalo,' 
which means, a marvel. I finally told him to do 
what he believed God wished him to do." 

On January igth, Pilkington gives voice to 
the great desire for further books and reading- 
sheets in a letter to Mr. Wigram, of which the 
following is an extract. 

" I cannot express the earnest longing we have 
for these books : what I feel is, that the whole 
future of Africa is in the balances here now, and 


delay in the arrival of these books may tell fatally. 
I believe any expense ought to be incurred to 
deliver these books at the very earliest opportunity. 
It is terribly trying thus writing for books which 
don't come, or if they do, come in driblets of 200 
or 500, when we want thousands ; 500 Gospels sell 
off in two days at a price which, at any rate, fully 
pays for carriage. 

The Roman Catholics are rushing in in the mean- 
times. We pray every day for books ; really, I 
think that men are less important. 

The new Church is very fine : the labour, I 
calculate, would have cost ^j,ooo at threepence 
per man per day. I don't think people at home at 
all realize yet what a fine people the Waganda are, 
and what an opportunity there is here to advance 
God's Kingdom." 

A few days later, the storm-cloud, which had been 
so long gathering, suddenly burst, but, before giving 
the graphic and temperate description of the 
conflict and the circumstances which led up to it 
from the pen of Mr. Baskerville, it may be as well to 
remind ourselves of the description of the political 
parties in Uganda which have been already 
mentioned. We use the word " political " advisedly, 
for, though they bore religious names, their aims were 
political rather than religious, and, as a further 
confirmation of this, we learn that the Roman 
Catholic party on the one hand, and the Protestant 
on the other, were known as the Wa Franza and the 
Wa Inglesa. 

The cause of this unfortunate division of two 


professedly Christian parties is not far to seek. 

Picture a small body of men at work in the 
centre of gross heathenism, seeking to lead the 
people to a knowledge of the true God and of His 
Son Jesus Christ. 

Just as they are beginning to gain an influence 
over the people, another party of men appears on 
the scene, of a different nationality and teaching a 
different creed, and bearing in their hands large 
presents with which to ingratiate themselves with 
the chiefs and people. 

Is it a wonder that the people of Uganda were 
bewildered, and that between the followers of each 
Mission there grew up a rivalry which permeated 
the whole life of the people ? 

None could regret this state of things more 
than the Protestant Missionaries, and, as far as 
possible, they tried to steer clear of such con- 
troversies. It was impossible, however, not to be 
affected by such a state of things as Mr. Baskerville 

" Namirembe, Uganda, 

January 31st, 1892. 

I know you will like some particular account of 
the terrible events of the last few days. I wrote to 
you a long letter when in Budu, telling you some- 
thing of the state of the country with reference to 
the work of the Company, and also with reference 
to the position of the two great religious parties. 
Some six weeks ago, I think anyone who had been 
in Uganda, during the first twelve months of the 


Company's administration, would have said that the 
country was rapidly quieting down again after its 
past troubles. The policy of the Company had been 
one which, taking the goodwill of the Protestant 
party for granted, had always rather favoured the 
Papist party; most careful had both Captains 
Lugard and Williams been to let no national or 
religious prejudices seem in any way to influence 
them in their administration. A year had passed 
since the expedition commanded by Captain Lugard 
had arrived here at the capital, just a few days 
previous to the arrival of Bishop Tucker and his 
party. War had been staved off from time to time, 
the Company contriving to balance the parties ; 
meanwhile, the Protestants ceding point after point 
for the sake of avoiding collision. The Resident 
has certainly done all in his power to avoid war — 
even swallowed personal insults rather than undo 
the work of twelve months — and it has been with 
the greatest regret that he has been forced into 
violent measures. Troubles began to brew about 
the middle of last month, just after the Company's 
new steel boat had left for the south end of the 
Lake, commanded by Mr. Bagge. But, before this, 
it had been proved on some four occasions that the 
Protestants were the aggrieved party. First, some 
six months ago, in August, a number of houses in 
the capital were burnt wantonly by the Roman 
Catholics, including the place of Ham Mukasa, a 
man who was wounded in the battle of Rubaga Hill. 
Second, in Budu, Kamswaga, King of Koki, a 
country south-west of Budu, was sent for, it was 


said, by the king, to turn the Protestants out of 
Budu ; this was done to a great extent, and, because 
of the unsettled condition of the country, I was 
unable for a month to move on from Walker's place 
at Masaka. Third, with regard to Kaganda, one of 
the islands which had been secured to the Protestant 
party, the Roman Catholics sent one hundred guns 
to turn out the chief sent by the king. Fourth, about 
the middle of December, the Mulondo, a prominent 
Protestant chief in Kyagwe, hearing that his place 
was likely to be attacked, asked leave to go down 
and protect it. Leave was refused by the king, but 
Captain Williams told him to go. On this, the kmg 
despatched four leading Roman Catholic chiefs, with 
five hundred guns, with orders to kill the Mulondo 
wherever they found him. This angered Captain 
Williams, and he told the king that he must at once 
send off messengers to stop these men ; and further^ 
he told us that if the Mulondo were to be killed, 
that the camp would be forced into war, which 
meant taking the Protestant side and probably 
driving out the Papists from the country. The 
messengers were recalled, and so the affair blew 
over. On December gth, a large caravan for the 
Company had arrived, bringing a great quantity of 
ammunition. This had put the king into a great 
state of excitement, and the day after Christmas 
Day, the king sent a message to the Katikiro, saying 
that he wished to become a Protestant. He saw that 
the power was on the Protestant side, a large 
caravan had arrived. Captain Lugard had returned 
as far as Budu with a large number of Sudanese 


soldiers, recovered from the two regiments of Emin 
Pasha's, left after Stanley had passed on to the 
coast. And he had been put in a further state of 
alarm by the Kimbugwe, the leading Roman 
Catholic chief, sending a party of men to destroy all 
his bhang pipes. These men had burned one of the 
king's houses and killed four men. That night, he 
asked for a Protestant guard to stand over his place. 
The Roman Catholics then came to our party, pro- 
posing to depose the king and put one of Kalema's 
sons, his nephew, on to the throne. To this the 
Protestants would not agree. Mwanga was bad, but 
what could they hope from a boy who had been in 
training at the Roman Catholic station of Bukumbe, 
near Usambiro ? Accordingly, the king saw that the 
tirrte was come for the weather-cock to shift. He 
was not, however, to be allowed to change his 
religion so easily. The French Bishop, the plan of 
deposing him being frustrated, thought that it would 
never do to lose the king from the Papist party, and 
went out and put the enormity of his sin before him, 
exhorting him to come to confession. ' First,' said 
Mwanga, ' I must have a present. My men have 
been killed, and my house burned.' ' All right,' says 
Monseigneur, ' you shall have forty tusks of ivory.' 
^ As soon as I get them,' says the king, * you shall 
confess me.' Captain Lugard reached Mengo on 
December 31st, and we at once felt the position of 
the Company secure in the country. We had heard 
news a little before, that the English papers were 
talking of the probable early withdrawal of the 
Company from Uganda, and, about the same time. 


arrived a fresh party of French priests, who, it is 
evident, gave this information to their people, repre- 
senting to the king that this was only a trading 
Company, and that it would be against their 
interests to fight ; and, further, that if they were 
about to withdraw, and if the Roman Catholic party 
held out a little longer, they would soon have every- 
thing their own way. You will see, as I go on, how 
this gave great confidence again to the king, and caused 
him, so far, to defy the power of the Company as to 
challenge them to fight him. 

On Friday, January 22nd, about mid-day, we 
heard three or four shots fired quite close by, and 
reports came in to say a Protestant had been 
murdered by the Roman Catholics. The Protestants 
immediately went to report the matter to Captain 
Lugard, also telling him that the Roman Catholics 
were guarding the body and refused them leave to 
take it away for burial. Lugard immediately left to 
see the king, when he was kept waiting for two 
hours — in itself a great insult to a Commissioner of 
the Queen. At last, he was taken in to the king, 
who professed ignorance of the whole occurrence, 
and asked the chiefs sitting round to tell him the 
whole story. Lugard said that before he could hear 
anything, the body must be removed, for it was a 
disgrace to the king and his country. A Roman 
Catholic and Protestant were immediately sent off 
to remove the body. Captain Lugard, too, reminded 
the king how that, when he had first come to the 
country, he had told him that, owing to the state of 
affairs and that a murder would probably cause civil 


war, any murderer must be executed. The king said 
he remembered all this, and that the words were 
very good. Captain Lugard, not feeling well after 
his long waiting in the sun, left Du Wallah, a 
Somali in whom he places great confidence, to be 
present at the subsequent trial. The man was 
brought in, and told the following story : — His gun 
had been stolen from him by one of the Katikiro's 
men, and he had taken his case before the Katikiro, 
who had promised to see his gun restored, if his 
story should be proved true. Two or three days 
elapsed without anything being done, and then this 
man thought that, as he had not been given another 
gun, he had better try and take one from the Protestants 
by force. Accordingly, he made a regular plot. He 
bought some beer and sat in his gateway offering it 
for sale — the plan being to take the gun from the 
first Protestant who should offer to buy it. He had 
several companions ready to help him, and two men 
inside his fence with loaded guns. A man presently 
came by, and came up to buy the beer, asking first 
to taste it. An argument then arose, and a man 
slipped behind him, seized his gun, and the whole 
party rushed into the fence. The Protestant and 
his friends followed, and were fired on by the two 
men with guns inside, one shot killing the man. 
The Protestant fired one shot without effect. The 
king, on hearing that the thief had been followed 
into his fence, said that he was, by the law of Uganda, 
justified in the subsequent murder, and that the 
prisoner must be set at liberty. It was late before 
Du Wallah returned, but early next morning he was 


sent back with a note, asking the king to reconsider 
this decision, and telHng him that, if he persisted in 
it, he would lead his country into war. For some 
time Du Wallah was not admitted, but he insisted 
on delivering the letter into the king's own hand. 
With the king were the Kimbugwe, the Kanta, and 
the Musalosleb, all leading Roman Catholic chiefs. 
The latter read the letter to the king, and when he 
came to Lugard's words about probable war if 
this decision was adhered to, the king caught him 
up, saying, 'What's that he says about war ? Let 
him come and fight, if he will ' ; and all the others 
began to laugh at Du Wallah. Du Wallah told the 
king that he was a Mohammedan, and that he had 
no leaning to either Roman Catholics or Protestants, 
but that he had never known such an obviously 
unfair and rotten judgment given anywhere ; and that 
he could assure the king that Captain Lugard had 
done his best to avoid war and give justice to all 
parties. 'What answer shall I take to my master?' 
said Du Wallah. The Kanta said, ' Tell him that, 
if he fights, we shall take all his wealth, and wipe out 
the English from the country.' This was too much 
for Captain Lugard to stand, and he sent to demand 
the person of the murderer ; if he were given up, 
the insulting message would be pardoned. Our 
people went to the king, and asked him why, when, 
in an exactly similar case, one of the Mugema's 
men had killed a Roman Catholic, the Mugema had 
been fined ? The king talked about exchanging 
bodies, and so being quits. No, said our men, we 
have other grievances besides this for which we have 


never had justice at all. Captain Lugard, the king 
and Roman Catholics seeming determined to defy him, 
resolved at last on stringent measures. On Saturday 
night, some 500 rifles were served out to the Protes- 
tant leaders for distribution, and a large quantity of 
ammunition ; for even then Lugard hoped that it 
would not be necessary for him personally to 

On Sunday, the 24th, of course services were out 
of the question. The Katikiro had been told by the 
Roman Catholics that if the Protestants did not 
fight they were a pack of cowards; and further, in 
the morning, as Roscoe had Sembera Mackay and a 
few others at a Bible Reading, we heard shots, the 
outcome of which we soon heard had been the 
murder of a man belonging to the Katikiro. Further 
Bible-reading was abandoned, and soon our whole 
place was deserted. We went off to have a short 
English service together ; before we had finished 
Sembera came, summoning us to go up to the fort, 
for both sides were all prepared for fighting. We, 
however, refused unless sent for officially by Captain 
Lugard, and, even when he did send for us, we said 
that we could not consent to go and leave all our 
things. He kindly sent forty men, and, after a 
quarter of an hour's hurried packing, we were off 
about twelve o'clock to Kampala. At the market- 
place we met Sembera, who, on hearing that most 
of our goods were still left behind, said he should go 
off and find a guard for the station. About 12.30 
we arrived at the camp, and as we were quietly 
sitting in the house we heard four guns. Lugard 


had previously sent demanding the original murderer, 
the murderer of the morning, and the Kanta, who 
had sent the insulting message, to be all given up. 
The man who had murdered the Katikiro's man was 
sent in, and a soldier of the Company who had been 
captured in the morning escaped. The Kanta refused 



Rough plan of the capital, marking the chief centres. 

to come, and the first murderer could not be given 
up at all. Well, so anxious was Captain Lugard to 
avoid war that he had sent a further message 
demanding only the first murderer to be given up, 
and other affairs would be overlooked, when these 
four gunshots sent us all flying out to seek the cause. 



We saw smoke over at the foot of Mengo, close by 
Mr. Stokes's garden, and soon other shots followed 
in a regular fusillade, and we could see the Papists 
fleeing before the Protestants. On the top of 
Rubaga Hill was some sharp fighting, and soon the 
Roman Catholic new church and houses were in one 
immense blaze, and the Protestants pushing on down 
the farther side of the hill towards the king's fences. 
All this while the camp Maxims were silent. Captain 
Lugard having decided not to interfere unless an 
attack was made on the fort. Presently we saw a 
large body of men coming down the opposite hill 
from the Kimbugwe's at the double, obviously making 
for the fort, and now the Maxims both opened a 
deadly fire. The Roman Catholics stopped and 
stared round, not knowing who or what was 
attacking, but when they realised that it was the 
cannon, they turned round and ran like rabbits in 
amongst the bananas. We hear some forty w^ere 
killed by these first volleys from the Maxims, and 
and the Kimbugwe and Kanta were wounded in the 
former's house, where they thought no gun could 
reach them. These men rallied at the top of the 
hill, and, joined by the men of the Musalosalo, 
managed to drive back the Katikiro and burn his 
house. Countless houses were now in flames, and 
one could scarcely see for the smoke. The Katikiro 
retreated on Kampala, and now Captain Lugard 
sent out Captain Williams with the Sudanese 
soldiers, who soon settled matters — the Katikiro's 
men and Pokino's re-formed behind him, and they 
went on burning all the Roman Catholic houses aiid 


driving the Papists far away towards the Lake. 
Leniency alone prevented them from driving them 
right into the water. The Protestants were vic- 
torious, the king's flag had been hauled down, but 
deep sorrow had come to us — the very first guns 
fired had killed. Sembera Mackay, our best and ablest 
man and most deeply-taught Christian. He had 
gone to find a guard for our place, and, as he was 
passing some houses where some of the king's 
slaves lived, he was shot at and died almost imme- 
diately — dear, brave Sembera, whom ever}- one 
loved, and of whom I never heard a disparaging 
word, has entered into his reward — and we are left 
to sorrow over his loss, and to trust our God to 
supply his place. Two other Church elders have 
been wounded, and two Protestant chiefs, one badly 
so. The doctors have their hands full every day 
now, and I expect never had such work before. 
Rubaga Hill had been taken by the Mugema and 
Pokino, together with the Mwanika — they were 
never once repulsed, but carried everything before 
them. It had been impossible to bring the priests 
over to the fort, and their station was manned by 
Roman Catholic chiefs who made a determined 
resistance ; one of their black Hausa doctors, who 
foolishly fought in person, was shot dead. The 
priests were all conducted to the fort the same 
evening, their place being a total wreck. 

We returned the same evening to our station, the 
whole of the Roman Catholics having fled. The 
king, with some 300 guns, had fled to the small 
island of Burungugi, just half a mile from the shore, 


about two hours from Mengo. Here he had his store 
and had sent all his wives and wealth, and here 
it was that the Christians so long withstood the 
Mohammedans. Here they thought that they were 
quite safe, remembering the unsuccessful attacks of 
the Mohammedans. The great object, of course, of 
the Company was now to get hold of the king and 
restore him to his throne, knowing that he was a 
mere puppet, and, if once in their hands, would do 
all they told him — of course they did not want the 
old chiefs back again, but the king alone. They 
sent several messages asking him to return, but he 
sent back to say that he wished to come but was 
guarded and unable to escape. Friday morning the 
French Bishop came to say he wished to leave the 
fort, but Lugard refused him several times officially. 
At last he came to say that unless he was forcibly 
detained he should go, for these were his orders from 
Rome. Accordingly, he went with all the priests 
except two, who, however, followed soon afterwards. 
He promised Lugard to persuade the king to 
return, and pass on himself to Sesse, and when 
there do all he could to protect Mr. Bagge, 
who is daily expected back with the boat, and 
also to send messages to Budu to his people 
to protect Ashe, Walker, and Smith, who are there 
at Masaka. He did none of these things, but went 
to the king, and he, abetted by Kisali, a blacksmith, 
a former pupil of Mackay, against the wish of all 
the Roman Catholic priests and chiefs, refused the 
king permission to return to Mengo. Does it not 
seem as if the French Mission is just God's 


appointed instrument to complete the confusion of 
Rome here in Uganda ? He, moreover, sent to 
Lugard to come with his Maxim and kill all the 
Roman Catholics on the island and then he might 
get the king ! Little, I expect, did he think that 
this would be so literally done. Yesterday, at 
10 a.m., Captain Williams marched out with one of 
the Maxims and some hundred soldiers, together 
with the majority of the Protestant party ; he hid 
his force on the Lake shore in the trees, watching 
his opportunity. Presently two women of the 
king's came off to get food in a canoe, and he sent 
out two soldiers to take them prisoners; the canoe- 
men, seeing this, made off to inform the people on 
the island. Two of the French priests camped on 
the beach of the island now came out and fired at 
the soldiers. These shots and the report of the 
canoe-men soon brought all the Roman Catholics 
to the shore, and some entered some of the canoes 
to come across and recover the women, evidently 
thinking that only a few peasants had seized them. 
Meanwhile, W^illiams had his Maxim brought into 
position, and I expect they were surprised at the 
warm reception they met with — the people on shore 
were quickly fleeing, and eleven canoes were sunk. 
On the first noise of firing, the French Bishop went 
to the king, and when he ascertained that it was 
really the camp soldiers, he got into the king's one 
canoe, and they made off together, and we hear are 
now in Sesse Island. The paddlers, on the first 
noise of shots, had all made off, and thus the 
Roman Catholic part\- were left absolutely without 


canoes. Many tried to make rough rafts of reeds 
and leaves, which quickly sank. The Mujadi, one 
of the principal Roman Catholic chiefs, fought 
furiously, and finally hid himself amongst the trees, 
and has not yet been found. The Kangoo was 
killed, and a great number of the Roman Catholics, 
but not one man of ours was so much as wounded. 

The camp and people are making every exertion 
to recover the king, who they feel sure is kept back 
against his will. If it should prove impossible to 
get him, the Mohammedan King Mbogo, Mutesa's 
brother, will be invited in as king. The people are 
very strong on royalty, and would prefer Mwanga 
back to anybody else, in spite of all his failings." 

A letter of Pilkington's, dated April ist, tells of 
the King's return, "having given the Roman 
Catholics the slip," and so he says, " there is a 
prospect of peace and security and firm government." 
With regard to the result, he continues in the same 
letter, " the rejoicing here is tremendous. I hope 
the work won't suffer for all this political success ; 
however, it has been God's doing. You know very 
well that this is not the sort of thing we count 
success, or care for, except in so far as it opens the 
door for the Gospel. . . . The English flag at last 
is really hoisted on Mengo." 

Reference has already been made to the serious 
loss to the Mission caused by the death of Sembera 

Pilkington's letter about him furnishes us with 
such a beautiful instance of his power of sympathy, 
and of the brotherly relations existing between him 


and his African colleagues, that with it we may fitly 
close this sad story of civil war in Uganda. 

" Namirembe, Uganda, 

25th January, 1892. 

Dearest Mother, — 

I must write to you to-night, though I can 
hardly see for tears, and my heart is bursting with 
sorrow. Our faithful friend, our dear, dear Brother, 
Sembera, was shot yesterday ; awful day. The very 
first to fall ; fittest for death ; God took him. 
Praise to His Name, but we are left bereaved. Oh, 
Mother, you don't know how I loved him, and love 
him still with all my soul ; everyone loved him ; the 
best, the bravest, the noblest, the wisest. Never to 
see his kind face in this w^orld again, or hear his 
cheery voice, and I was safe in Kampala ; I couldn't 
even bid him good-bye for the last time. But good- 
bye or no, God was with him, for he walked with God. 

Our joy, our comfort, our right hand is gone ; 
praise be to God who gave us such a treasure for a 
while, and now has taken it to Himself; but it is 
hard to flesh and blood. He is a loss greater than 
any almost I can think cf to our work here; he was 
respected by both parties, and his humble, useful, 
consistent life has been, and will be, an eloquent 
sermon on the grace of God. God will not suffer 
His Work to suffer, 

' But O for the touch of a vanish'd hand, 
And the sound of a voice that is still.' 

His is the joy of meeting with his Lord ; ours is the 


pain, and the sure and certain hope of glory. His 
dear name is written for ever on my heart. 

He leaves a wife and a baby girl — one of his boys 
has asked to be with me. His last words were : 
' God is taking my soul.' I won't in this letter, or 
now, write of the other events of that sad day. 
This letter is, alas ! heavy enough, when it has this 
one burden to bear, that ' a prince and a great man 
has fallen to-day in Israel.' 

Your loving son, 




The war over, the next few months afforded 
splendid opportunities for working at the language. 
As, however, the strain of recent events had been 
rather great, Pilkington was persuaded to take a 
holiday, of which he gives the following realistic 
description : — 

" It was on Saturday, 26th March, that I started for 
our * country seat ' by the Lake (if I may so call it) ; 
it is called Kuilwe, and is a peninsula running out 
into the Lake, pretty well due south of Mengo. 

As I was going partly for change — except for my 
visit to Sowe, you remember, I've been in the capital 
for fifteen months — I didn't intend to rough it more 
than I could help, and so I took, not only our 
donkey (ours is admittedly the best in the country, 
his only rival, also ours, had to be left, alas ! to the 
tender mercies of the Roman Catholics in Budu), but 
also one of my cows and its calf; for, in this 
country, a calfless cow is unmilkable ; I wish, by- 
the-way, father would send me directions thereanent 
(as John Paton says in his most delightful book, 
which I've been again reading with renewed pleasure) 


when and how should a calf be taken from its 
mother ? 

You will like to hear what I took with me exactly. 
Let me tell you, by w^ay of loads. My porters con- 
sisted of a Aluganda, whom I asked from his master, 
James Kabuga, late Mission servant ; three boys of 
Ashe's, whom he was kind enough to lend me ; and 
two boys of my own — six in all. The loads were : 
(i) a large bag containing blankets (three of them, 
Jaeger's), a mattress, a mosquito net, a change of 
clothes, pyjamas, towel, soap, brushes, etc.; this was 
carried by the Muganda. (2) My tin writing-desk, 
which contained besides writing materials, tea, 
coffee, sugar, saccharine, quinine, pills, anchovy paste, 
a little cheese, a little fresh butter in two small 
Liebig pots, some needles and cotton for use and 
also for presents (a line needle is worth twenty shells, 
a coarse one fifteen; by-the-way, I'll try and send 
you some Uganda needles in this letter), and some 
fish-hooks. (3) A bucket, containing knife, fork, 
spoon, cup, jug, with some home-made bread, wheat 
and Indian corn mixed, made into a kind of toast or 
biscuit by a second turn in the oven (you know my 
oven is a large native pot inverted, with a bonfire of 
grass on the top), and some broken biscuit of the 
kind that, at Uppingham, we called ' dog-rocks,' 
but which are a considerable luxury out here. (4) 
An iron basin, containing a kettle and a saucepan, 
with a folding chair ; the two remaining boys carried 
my three water bottles (which I filled with milk), 
and looked after the donkey and cow and calf. I 
actually started from Ashe and Walker's ph :e ; they 


arc living in what was the place of a Roman Catholic 
whom I knew well, and in whom I was, and am, 
rather interested. He told me that he was a Roman 
Catholic because it was they who followed the 
teaching of the New Testament, c.i^., ' Where was 
the cross that we took up in following Jesus ? ' I 
told him that, if he convinced me of that, I, too, 
would become a Roman Catholic, as there was no 
other authority we followed but the Word of God. 
We have had a little correspondence since the war, 
and, in his letter, he asks me where our Fold is, 
and where is our Shepherd ? However, this is a di- 

Walker, as I started, proved himself a true prophet 
of evil, when he warned me that my newly-cobbled 
boots would not hold out. (Fve turned cobbler of 
late ; mended my dear old Jaeger boots with buffalo 
hide, only the soles of them. Jaeger boots are the 
best for Africa ; this would do for an advertisement !) 

At last, we are off — loads in front, cow and calf, 
donkey, boy, and, last of all, myself. It was a lovely 
walk through a sort of country lane, sweet smelling 
trees every now and again making the air very 
pleasant ; then up some hill-side, from the top of 
which a splendid view of Lake, creek, and island is 
visible ; then along the side of a valley, with the rich 
banana plantations crowding up on each side from 
the wooded valley below ; then down into the valley, 
where there is a scrap of what I suppose a tropical 
forest is like on a more extensive scale ; and then 
through a river, or rather a marsh, which stretches, 
perhaps, half-a-milc in width, and for which the 


donkey comes in very useful, unless some strong 
and not too lazy Baganda happens to be at hand to 
take one over; it is really amazing how these men 
carried me, who am no light weight — I expect I'm 
as heavy now as ever I was. I mount on the 
shoulders of one, who kneels down to receive me ; 
with the help of a second, he stands up, and then up 
to his middle in water, and up and down banks three 
feet in height, he carries me alone. 

I stopped half-way, and had some refreshment in 
the way of milk, bread and butter, and cheese. Then 
on again, not waiting for the mid-day sun to go 
down at all, for I wanted to be in early, that a house 
and some sort of a bed might be got ready for me. I 
was now going along by the Lake shore, and in a 
couple of hours, it was evident that we were on a 
peninsula, about a mile broad, runnmg out into the 
Lake. It was like a park, the soil was very rocky 
and sandy ; in consequence the grass was short and 
light for this country, and not unlike a rather poor 
meadow at home ; clumps of trees were sprinkled 
about in a very pretty way, some of the trees rather 
like laurel (a thing which I hate), which greatly 
increased the artificial appearance of the place ; the 
Lake that bounded it added to the effect. Here, I 
rode the donkey for a bit, while my boy Serukwaya, 
quite of his own accord, carried the tired calf; we 
were the only two who needed either milk or a lift. 

At last, we have reached our destination ; it is not 
yet three o'clock, I should think (a watch that will 
go has long been a thing of the past with me). 
Kudumusinayi, one of the two tenants, though each 


has several under him, and underlings of underlings 
also abound, gives me a warm welcome. I knew 
him as our tenant at Natete. 

My boys and I are allotted a small round house, 
not as big as an average Irish cabin, and yet the 
seven of us slept and lived there very comfortably for 
three days. I found the house with a hole in the 
roof, the floor deep covered with ancient grass and 
dust, and a very suspicious bed in the corner ! 
Suspicious, in that I fancied that many creatures 
other than human slept in it. 

However, when I came back from a short explora- 
tion of our property, I found the hole mended, the 
floor swept, and a very nice bed in the course of 
erection. I also found quite a crowd collected to 
see me ; I tried to make friends with them, and 
invited them to a Service in the morning. Then I 
had food — coffee, plantains, potatoes, fish, and 
bread and butter. They also cooked in profusion 
for my boys. Next morning, about fifty, nearly 
all men, came to the service. I read and ex- 
plained and made them say the Ten Command- 
ments, and then pointing out how we could not 
establish our own righteousness, tried to show them 
what Jesus had done for us ; then we had the 
Commandments as in the Communion Seryice, and 
a few Prayers. 

I was told that many of the fishermen still believe 
that if they take a fish in their hands, immediately 
all the fish will die ; I told them of the quantities 
of fish I had seen caught on the North Sea ; was it 
only the Uganda fish that dreaded hooks ? 


I had another httle Service in the afternoon, and 
then went coasting along for a bit in a canoe, and 
visited a remarkable cave on the end of a long, low- 
lying, narrow peninsula : the rock which formed 
the cave was twenty feet high, and covered with 
trees and creepers, making a very pretty object as 
seen from a sandy piece of beach, near which I want 
to get a house built, that will receive any of us who 
might go to teach or for a change ; of course it 
would be part of the people's business to build for 
us, either there or at the Capital. 

The trees on the island were, some of them, 
magnificent ; three kinds of fruit grow there — 
empafu, something between plums and olives ; 
ensali, something like a very acid cherry, and 
eroyidu, not unlike sloes ; there is also some coffee. 
I saw lots of monkeys, crocodiles, and hippos. 

On the Monday, I visited each house in the place ; 
men, women, and children, might reach, perhaps, 
200 , if the ground were full cultivated, i,ooo might 
be supported there. 

If only the reading sheets and other books would 
come soon ; among all these people, five only, I 
think, had books at all. 

I came back on Tuesday, just in time to see the 
king return, to inaugurate, I hope, a new era in his 
strange and eventful reign. In writing in detail as I 
have done, I have this special object : I wish, when 
the country is quiet, to undertake some itinera- 
ting work, in Kyagwe especially, which is the 
province between this and the Nile ; possibly 
in the Islands too. You will, from this account, be 


able to understand a little better how 1 am likely to 
live while engaged in this sort of work, which, 
however much I appreciate the privilege and the 
need of translational work, is what I came for most 
of all, and which is, moreover, indispensable if the 
translation is to be done properly." 

In April, news was received of the death of Mr. de 
Winton, son of Sir Francis de Winton, in Toro. 
Pilkington felt his loss keenly, as the following 
words shew : " We were all of us here, I know, very 
fond of him; he was a most dehghtful companion. 
He brightened many an evening in this house, and 
I spent many a pleasant hour with him when he 
was alone at Kampala. I was the invalid then ; 
and he would keep me interested for hours to- 
gether with stories of his American and other 

It is hard to believe that I shall never hear his 

cheery voice again in this world He didn't 

hide his Hght, but was known by the others at 
Kampala, and, indeed, by the Christians here, as a 
Christian man ; he sometimes came to our Luganda 
service in the morning, and often to the Lord's 

It is hard to over-estimate the value of such 
a man holding an official position in the Mission 

On his return to the Capital, Pilkington devoted 
himself once more to his translational work, and on 
June 2nd, 1892, he wrote at some length to Mr. Lang, 
giving some description of the progress of his w urk, 


and offering some valuable suggestions as the im- 
portant subject of Language Study : — 

" I have two or three matters connected v^ith 
translation and language, that I have for some time 
wished to write to you about, and I take this 
opportunity, as, having had fever twice lately, the 
Doctor recommends me not to do so much trans- 
lation as I have been doing, and so I'll write this 
letter instead. The first point is about the trans- 
lation of the New Testament in particular ; in ten 
days or so, if nothing occurs to hinder my w^ork, I 
should finish Corinthians. Hebrews is finished, — 
the New Testament will then be all translated. 
Gordon took the Gospels, and Acts. Ashe, I believe, 
translated i John ; and I shall have sent the rest, 
when Hebrews and Corinthians shall have gone. I 
am afraid you may think that the work has 
been too quickly done to have been well done. I 
want to explain to you how this is not really the 
case. There never was anyone w'ho more than I 
entered into other men's labours. I found several 
men, H. W. Duta far ahead of them all, with a 
good knowledge of the whole New Testament ; they 
knew Swahili, and were thoroughly practised in trans- 
lating from Swahili into Luganda ; there were none 
of the ordinary difficulties of searching for w^ords to 
translate the important terms and phrases of the 
Gospel ; these w^ere not only at hand, but so far 
stereotyped by extensive use, that any radical 
changes, had I wished to make them, could hardly 
have been justifiable. This fact made the work 
possible, and it also makes nic hope that the trans- 


lation (thanks not to me, but to my predecessors 
and to the Waganda themselves), is a better one 
than a first translation into a new language generally 
can be ; it has been, really, beaten out during many 
years by the best brains among the Waganda them- 
selves, with the help of Mackay, Ashe, Gordon, 
Walker, and the others who have been here. So 
you see there were exceptional facilities. I think 
there was also an exceptional need, for I should 
think there was hardl}' ever so large a body of 
Christians, in modern days, so eager to learn, for so 
long a time with only one book of the Bible in their 
own tongue, and that in such limited quantities. 
There is a special reason, too, which makes me long 
for Luganda books : the idea has gained ground 
that — as no can know much of Christianity without 
being able to read, and knowing Swahili — therefore, 
reading, and a knowledge of Swahili makes a man a 
Christian — nothing will quite eradicate this motion, 
I think, but books in Luganda. There is one defect 
in the translation, which is at the same time, I 
think, a merit in a first translation : I have not 
always translated, or tried to translate, the same 
Greek word by the same Luganda ; I preferred, in 
the present state of my knowledge, to leave the 
question open by translating it variously ; better 
leave the decision till the time when we shall be in 
a position to be sure that the selected translation 
is the best. There is another defect which, I'm 
afraid, could not and cannot be remedied — the use 
of one Luganda word for two or three different 
Greek ones ; for, of course, Luganda, though a very 


rich language, may happen to be weak just where 
Greek is strong ; we have used one word for the 
Greek Trvevfxa, y\rv^r] (in sense of soul), and Kaphla — 
the word for ' spirit,' was one of those stereo- 
typed words I spoke of, and I never thought of 
changing it (Ashe, however, the other day, said it 
was still not too late — but I think it is) — otherwise, 
I think I should have preferred a word meaning 
' air ' or ' wind,' to the word chosen, which simply 
means soul or spirit in a metaphysical sense, and 
has no material meaning. Again, the word for 
' to love ' and ' to will ' is the same in Luganda ; 
hence, ' according to the will of God ' might mean 
'the love of God.' Again, for 'to accept' and 
' to believe,' there is only one word. I had in- 
tended not to attempt much of the Old Testament, 
until I had gone home and read Hebrew, but lately, 
I have started at the Psalms and Joshua. Joshua 
is finished (but I want to go through it with Henry), 
and about fifty of the Psalms. About half of 
Genesis and Exodus is done, too ; but I have to go 
over this again. Before I get an answer to this 
letter, I am likely, if the Lord will, to get the 
Pentateuch and a good deal of the Historical Books 
translated. I should like to know what you think 
of this, i.e., my doing it without the Hebrew. 
There is another even more important matter that 
I wished to write about. I don't think the Com- 
mittee can realize how much difficulty most men 
have in learning these African languages, else I 
don't think they would send men, not specially 
qualified, into a country where the language is not 


known. I believe that it's, in most cases, worse 
than useless sending a man who has not had special 
training in language and the theory of it, to such a 
place ; it is awfully trying to himself, physically and 
spiritually ; at the same time, very discouraging ; 
and I cannot but strongly suspect that it would 
account for a good many promising careers cut 
short. The long period that must elapse, before 
such a man can express to the natives the object 
which has brought him there, must surely cause a 
host of misconceptions on their part ; his apparently 
luxurious life — as it is to them — must surely give 
them very misleading ideas which for years the 
Missionary canT correct. It isn't enough to send a 
man of ordinary all-round education ; he ought to 
have made a special study of language — that is, 
thoroughly compared the structure of any two 
languages ; and, besides that, he ought to know 
Steere's book (except the vocabularies) absolutely, 
so as to know the skeleton of a Bantu language. 
I beg to respectfully suggest to the Committee to 
appeal specially for such men — Cambridge men, e.g., 
who have at least got a Second in Classics ; and, 
farther, that Stations, where a new language has to 
be learnt, should not be opened till such men be 
forthcoming, as otherwise great expense will be 
incurred and perhaps more harm done than good. 
The language once mastered and a grammar written, 
men with less aptitude for languages, but, perhaps, 
far better Missionaries can step in and, without 
unnecessary loss of precious time and health, 
begin work. But to send such a man up in the 


first instance, what a sad waste ! I assure you, the 
majority of the men whom I've seen in the field 
closely, wouldn't learn a new language without help 
in twenty years. If you doubt this, write a circular 
to the Missionaries, asking them how long they 
they suppose they would be learning a new 
language without any sort of help from books. I 
expect the average would put down ten years. I 
hope I don't seem to be puffing the facility which I 
have in learning a language : after all the years I've 
spent on the subject, I should be a duffer if I hadn't 
profited at all by it ; what have I that I haven't 
received ? But I assure you I am prompted to 
write this by the earnest desire to see the Gospel 
preached to all nations, an object which I am 
convinced will only be retarded by sending men 
not specially trained in language to new stations in 
the first instance. If men, interested in language, 
knew what a magnificent field this is, they might 
come for that reason ; but I had rather they came 
for the Gospel's sake — but the other reason might 
do as a counterpoise to fever, journeys, and other 

Commenting in another place on the need of 
trained men for language work, Pilkington writes — 

" Let those who are sometimes inclined to feel 
that the years spent on Greek and Latin were 
partially wasted come out here, and in one short 
year I venture to say they will have ' redeemed the 
time ' so spent. Do any such think they are too 
good for Africa ? If so, may God forgive them a 
thought so presumptuous and silly ! They will get 


no higher returns on any abilities, spiritual, 
intellectual, physical, which God has given them 
for investment, than they will get in Africa, and, 
perhaps, especially here. Every qualified worker 
might be the means, in God's hands, of sending 
out in a few years time, say twenty, well-taught, 
spiritual, zealous Baganda as missionaries to the 
surrounding nations — each one of them in many 
ways far superior to an English missionary. Would 
not this repay any labour, any loss ? The 
evangelization of Africa is visible from Uganda. 
How long it is to be before it shall be an 
accomplished fact Christian England must decide." 
At this time he was working at a Root dictionary, 
of which he writes as follows : — 

" I aim at 20,000 words. I don't think I shall 
find this difficult. Luganda is a very wealthy 
language. I think it will be necessary to go in for 
a little Luyima (or Kituse) and Lusoga to do the 
root work perfectly. These three languages are 
barely more than dialects and throw enormous 
light on one another. So does Swahili, but to a 
much smaller extent. I have also written, some 
time ago, for a Zulu grammar, as I have reason to 
think (I have a Zulu Prayer Book) this language 
very closely allied to Luganda. 

I am very hopeful — from the slight investigations 
I have been able to make into Lusoga and Luyima 
— that a single Bible will do for these two countries, 
and Uganda, as well as Unyoro (I expect). The 
idea (once entertained, I believe) that Swahili would 
do for these countries is a mere dream. It would 


be about the same thing us trying to introduce 
German into England. Luganda is entirely 
different from and superior to Swahili. Out of a 
considerable number of Lusoga words I have got, 
five, I think, in every ten, are identical with 
Luganda, four the same root, modified, perhaps, and 
with a different prefix, and one a totally different 
word, although otten a word which also occurs in 
Luganda but in a different sense. In the Root 
dictionary, I hope to be able to include (by a simple 
system of signs that won't, I think, interfere with 
its usefulness and handiness for Luganda) a good 
many Lusoga and Luyima and Lunyoro words — 
the roots being identical in so many cases, this will 
not be difficult in a Root dictionary ; and where they 
differ they do so by regular changes. 

It would be well still to have a Vocabulary on the 
old system, as in Steere's book, for beginners, 
containing the words in everyday use only. 

My own belief is that a thorough knowledge of 
the language must be gained if Uganda is to be the 
great centre of civilization and teaching which I 
cannot but suppose the Committee expect it to be. 
In order to give you a better idea of what 
I propose to do in the Dictionary, I give a couple 
of roots worked — good specimens of course ; you 
mustn't suppose that all roots are equally prolific, 
but I think you will admit these to be very pretty. 

Three thousand such roots would give a very 

ample vocabulary." (For specimen quoted above see p. 199.) 

A little later hs describes the eagerness of the 
people to obtain books. 


Specimen of Luganda Roots. 

^' We have been selling books (Matthews, Prayer 
Books, and reading books, 130, iSo, and 600 
respectively) to-day and yesterday. How shall I 
describe it ? Feeding the lions at the Zoo, a scramble 
(^f street boys for coppers, perhaps a distribution of 
food in famine time, these are the things suggested. 



The people who came with shells to buy and went 
away empty were twice as many as those who 
received books, and then this is only one place in 
this large country ; and further, it is not easy to 
collect shells on one day's notice. What we want 
are books, not thousands, but millions of books. 
I should like to see -f 5,000 spent at once on printing 
and sending up of books ; this would be a glorious 
way of advancing God's Kingdom. 

All day long the place has been crowded with 
people who refuse to believe that there are no more 
books. How would you feel if at a Christmas 
party the tea and cake ran so short that only one in 
every five got anything at all ? I feel something 
like that. And yet these books are of more value 
to these starving souls than are tea and cake to a 
starving child. I wish you could run a long pin 
into every one at home who's asleep and won't wake 
up to help us. It's disgraceful the way we've been 
left without books — simply dreadful. I trust and 
hope and pray that better times are coming. In 
other places, money and energy is spent in trying to 
get people to buy and read (or even take) the Bible ; 
but here, be the reason what you will, the wild desire 
to read and possess a book has seized the whole 
country. If we don't supply the demand the 
Roman Catholics will." 

Two letters from George to his mother, written in 
August and September, besides giving some account 
of the progress of the work in Uganda, deal with 
some interesting questions which came before him 
at this time. 


" Namirembe, Mengo, 

Sunday, 7th August, 1892. 

In Buganda itself, things are going on quietly. 
The new Church — really a magnificent building that 
impresses you like a Cathedral — was opened last 
Sunday. The king came, and a vast congregation, 
enough to fill the Church twice, not much short, I 
think, of 10,000 people. I read the Bishop's letter, 
Henry and Nikodemo preached. This morning 
there was a congregation of 3,000 or 4,000, I think ; 
Church not quite full, and I preached on Matthew 
22, and we had Communion to which about 100 
people stayed 

However, the news from Busoga is very alarming. 
Wakoli (where Smith is), was shot by one of the 
Company's coast men (originally a Musoga), 
whether by accident or not nobody knows. Smith 
had the narrowest possible escape with his life ; 
forty Waganda, we are told, were murdered. 
Captain Williams, on hearing of it, immediately 
set out with the Maxim and 170 men, on the day 
that I came back from the Islands, 28th July. No 
news from him yet. 

. . . . One of the elders told me the other 
day that we should never satisfy the demand for 
books. More people begin reading day by day, 
and month by month, than books come. Oh for 
books ! However, Ashe's printing press is doing a 
great work. 

I quite agree with you about 
distinctions between secular and religious. To a 
Christian man nothing should be secular : he is a 


soldier on duty always (or neglecting it — never off 
duty) ; to one who is not a Christian nothing, is 
religious ; in this, as in everything, not that which 
' entereth into a man ' from without, nothing ex- 
ternal ' defileth the man,' but that which comes 
out of his heart, that ' defileth a man,' and a 
man's heart is not visible to us. To his own 
master, each servant stands or falls. I am no priest 
to usurp that which is God's alone. 

If a man wants to go in for what are called 
worldly pleasures, I can't see what good it would be 
to hinder him ; if he tastes the pleasures which God 
gives, the others drop off, as a dog drops a bit of 
potato when you offer him a bone. There isn't 
time for both. I say, let every man do according as 
he is disposed in his heart. A man is what he is 
disposed in his heart to be ; what he does is only a 
symptom of what he is and of very trifling 
importance comparative^ — except as a symptom. 
The Devil chained would be a Devil still. Even 
when he appears as an Angel of light, he's still the 

At the same time, when I see a chap raking in a 
muck heap, it's only common charity and common 
sense to ask him what he finds there worth looking 
for, and point to the crown. Not that I would 
venture to say that I don't often have a rake at it 
myself. When I do so, I hope I should be grateful 
to anyone who showed me what a fool I was. 

Don't imagine that I suppose that nobody does 
God's will who is not a missionary or a preacher or 
a ' professional Christian ' of some sort. Very far 


from it. ' Let every man be fully persuaded in his 
own mind.' ' Whatsoever is not of faith is sin.' 
Good-bye for to-night." 

"9 p.m., Thursday, i8th August. 
Mail goes to-morrow. Captain Williams back 
from Busoga. Smith is all right; is at Luba's now." 

"C.M.S.. Namirembe, Uganda, 

3rd September, 1892. 

. . . In spite of a good deal of fever lately, I've 
been wonderfully strong and well ; able to go up 
every morning to the great church on the hill, where, 
after the regular reading and prayers, I have a class 
of seven elders ; then, while they teach seven classes 
of candidates for baptism on the lines just given 
them by me, I have a class of some twenty boys, 
the most promising ones ; then I sing with a sort of 
choir, which I have started. You will be surprised 
that I should teach singing, but, as nobody else does 
it, and they sing awfully badly, I do what I can. In 
the afternoon, I translate with Henry — Exodus, 
at present ; also I am writing, at the request of our 
Committee here, a little book in Luganda of outlines 
of Christian doctrine, which is meant to be a help to 
Baganda teachers. . . . Luganda is ten times 
as hard as Swahili ; true, Swahili is the easiest 
language in the world to get a superficial knowledge 
of, but Luganda is undoubtedly difficult. 

My b3ans are growing splendidly. I have two 
little broods of fowls (four and six respectively), one 
hen sitting, and another laying ; six goats, nine 
sheep, a ram, three lambs, a bull, fourteen cows and 


eight calves. I think this a better way of keeping 
my cloth (investing it in beasts) than keeping in my 
house, where the dangers to it are so many. 

The produce of my flocks and herds supports me. 
Leopards are my bugbears. 

The rennet powder works beautifully ; milk in 
various forms is my chief food ; the other men despise 
skim milk — I think it the thing for this country. 
Whey is a great thing, too. . . . Don't be 
afraid of my not taking care of my health ; I am a 
perfect old woman, awfully afraid of a draught or 
anything damp, over-exertion, or anything else — one 
learns to be careful here — that is the most important 
part of acclimatization, though, I believe, one does 
get to some extent acclimatized besides. I am too 
much interested in the work here to do anything 
that might force me to leave it. I hope to live to 
see the whole of Africa evangelized. If only Christian 
England made a honest effort, it wouldn't take 
many decades to do it. But England, I'm afraid, is 
in earnest about one thing only — making money. 

By the way, my flocks and herds above-mentioned 
are altogether worth only about a load of cloth, 
costing about £3 at the coast, and £j for carriage — 
total £10. Besides, four of the cattle and three of 
the goats were presents. About 100 lbs. of common 
washing soap would buy the whole lot." 

A little later, he speaks of receiving some wheat 
from the Katikiro, which he ground in a coffee mill, 
and made brown bread with it, '' besides first-rate 
pancakes ; cakes and puddings occasionally ! " 


Another trip down the lake gave him another 
change, and in November, 1892, he writes :— 

" Uganda, 

November 23rd, 1892. 

I have just returned from a trip to Nassa, about 
which I wrote to Mr. Lang, undertaken by the 
advice of the brethren here. I am glad to say that 
it has done me a great deal of good and I feel as 
well as possible. I got back on the i8th. I was 
interested to find that the languages spoken all along 
the West Coast of the Lake and on the Island of 
Ukerewe are very close to Luyima (Kituse), the 
language of the Wahuma, as Stanley, I think, calls 
them. My Mwima boy could talk fluently with 
them all and understand them. I felt this as an 
additional reason for extension into the countries of 
the Bayima, to the West of Uganda, Toro, etc. I 
believe that this language, in different dialects, is 
spoken over a greater area than Luganda. But, at 
present, the miserable reinforcements of which we 
hear, make me despair of extension even into Busoga, 
where, as you know by this time, the work was 
temporarily given up. I do not think that either the 
Christian public or even the C. M.S. Committee have 
grasped how^ great the need is here. There are vast 
arrears of work to be done here ; vast numbers call 
themselves Christians, and are regarded as such by 
the people generally, who have not only no heart 
religion, but not even a knowledge of Christian 
morality. What I fear is a widespread misconcep- 
tion of the meaning of Christianity, if this state of 


things continues. This calamity can be averted only, 
I venture to thmk, by an adequate supply of teachers, 
and also of books ; at present, we have neither in 
anything like the numbers needed. We already see 
many sad instances of inconsistency, and, what is 
worst of all, they are evidently not regarded as any- 
thing very bad by the great bulk of the people ; I am 
afraid that this will spread and corrupt the Church. 
* Reading ' is getting, it seems to me, to be less and 
less regarded as inconsistent with drunkenness and 
fornication. Naturally enough, for now great 
numbers are ' reading,' and few have renewed 
hearts and therefore renewed lives. Individual work 
is what is needed here, and this takes such a time. 

It is wonderful, and yet, perhaps, not really so 
when you consider that we are foreigners here, how 
the Gospel, when preached to numbers even in the 
simplest and plainest way, seems to be not under- 
stood, or at any rate not realized, as a personal 

I have quite failed to express how urgent, how 
terrible seems to me the need of men." 

It is clear from the above that the Missionaries 
fully realized the dangers of a rapid spread of 
Christianity in Uganda, and, if there have been 
exaggerated ideas abroad of the progress of the 
work, it has not been the fault of the Missionaries 
who have all along told of discouragement as well 
as success. 

Just a month after the writing of this letter, 
Bishop Tucker arrived for the second time in Uganda, 
and his testimony as to Pilkington's gifts as an 


interpreter, and as to the progress of the work in 
Uganda, form a valuable commentary on much that 
has been already mentioned in this chapter. The 
Bishop writes : — 

" At about 4 p.m., to our great joy, our long and 
weary journey of eighty-nine days was at an end, 
and we were with our dear brethren at Mengo. A 
heavy storm of rain had prevented people coming in 
any large numbers to meet us, but, as the weather 
cleared up, we were soon besiged with visitors. To 
see the friends and brethren who, two years ago, had 
travelled up from the coast with me was indeed a 
great joy. Mr. Pilkington was looking the very 
picture of health. Mr. Baskerville, too, was looking 
very well, and enjoys, I am glad to think, excellent 
health. After some refreshment, we went to see the 
houses in which we are to live. They have been 
built for us by our Native brethren. My house 
astonished me. It is one of the largest in Buganda. 
It has six rooms in it. 

Christmas Day dawned, and verily it is a day 
never to be forgotten. The thrill that went through 
me when, two years ago, I addressed a congregation 
of 1,000 souls in the old Church is still fresh in my 
memory. If I was thrilled then, I was simply over- 
whelmed yesterday when I stood up to speak in the 
name of our Master to a congregation numbering 
over 5,000 souls. I wonder whether, in the 
whole mission-field, such a sight has been witnessed 
since Apostolic days. Tlie perfect stillness as I 
stood up to speak, and indeed throughout the 
service, was almost as awe-inspiring as the sight of 


the great multitude itself. Mr. Pilkington inter- 
preted for me, and it was quite evident that he 
performed his task to perfection. In the afternoon, 
a second service was held, and I suppose between 
three and four thousand people must have been 
present. At this service about thirty women were 
baptized. Mr. Baskcrville preached in Luganda. 
Later in the afternoon, an English service was held. 
At this service a larger number of Europeans were 
present than have been gathered together before in 
Uganda. Christmas Day was a trying day, but an 
intensely joyful day — a day worth coming to the 
ends of the earth to enjoy. 

I have brought with me from the coast more than 
8,000 portions of the Word of God. The delight of 
the people is indescribable. Daily my house is 
besieged by w(Mild-be purchasers. Last time when 
books arrived, the eagerness to possess them was 
such that there was danger of the house being 
knocked down. It has therefore been decided to 
sell them at different centres at one and the same 
time. Those who come for books are therefore 
turned away until the arrangements are complete 
for the sale to go forward. Many more loads of 
books are coming up by the old road, and I trust, 
by our friends at home keeping up the supply, to 
pour a constant stream of God's truth upon the 



The early days of 1893 were great days in Uganda ; 
six natives were ordained deacons on the under- 
standing that they were to be supported by the 
Native Church, and ten others were licensed as lay 
evangelists. In February, the Bishop held his second 
Confirmation in Uganda; of this he wTites: — 

''Seventy-five were confirmed, all adults. This was 
the first Confirmation in the new Church, or, as I 
think I must call it, the Cathedral. For Central 
Africa it is as wonderful a building as Durham 
Cathedral is for England. There are nearly 500 
trees used in it as pillars; somj of them were 
brought five and six days' journey and needed 
several hundred men to carry them. The order and 
decency of the services is most admirable. The 
Confirmation was a much more reverent ceremony 
than many which I have been at in England." 

In March, Sir Gerald Portal, Impsrial Commis- 
sioner to Uganda, arrived in Mengo, and, on April ist, 
the Company's flag was hauled down and the Union 
Jack took its place, in token that Uganda was now 
to be regarded as part of the British Empire. This 
was intended, in the first place, to be a temporary 

P 209 


measure, the final arrangement being announced to 
Parliament in April, 1894. 

During his stay in Uganda, the Commissioner was 
chiefly occupied in seeking to arrange terms of 
agreement between the rival factions in Uganda. 
With the assistance of Bishop Tucker and 
Monseigneur Hirth, an arrangement of territory was 
made which, it was hoped, would be satisfactory to 
all parties. On May 30th, Sir Gerald Portal left for 
the coast, Bishop Tucker leaving three days later by 
the Southern route. He then wrote : '' The position 
of our friends is absolutely secure in our opinion." 

How^ soon these hopes of peace were to be dis- 
appointed is shown by the following letter from 
Pilkington, dated Kampala, June 20th, 1893 : — 

" You will see that something is up by the address, 
Kampala ; we have had exciting times again these 
last few days, but I am thankful to say that things 
are, I think, all right again now ; they might easily 
have been anything but all right. First of all, so 
that you may understand the events of the last few 
days, let me explain the state of affairs. Captain 
Lugard, you remember, brought some 500 Soudanese 
soldiers with their ' Colonel,' Selim Bey — who had 
mutinied at Wadelai under Emin Pasha — from the 
North. He also brought in the Mohammedan party, 
and gave them three small provinces lying close 
together to the North-east of Budu. Since they 
came into the country, they have done no work for 
the king, as in duty bound. 

Sir G. Portal, when here, insisted that they should 
do their proper work, and told them that, if they 


refused, they would be driven out. They demanded an 
increase of territory, as they saw that the Roman 
Catholics, who also, hitherto, have done no work, 
had received so large an increase. This was refused 
by Sir G. Portal, and the attitude of the Mohamme- 
dans had been threatening. However, Captain 
Macdonald, who was left in charge on the Consul's 
departure, made them promise to work about ten 
days ago, and they sent to their country places for 
men to come and work. However, our people 
assured us that they did not mean to work, and were 
only making this a pretext for getting up their guns, 
as they said that Selim Bey (of course, the Soudanese 
are Mohammedans and very thick with the Baganda 
Mohammedans) had promised, and, iadeed, we hear 
now, sworn on the Koran, that, in case of war, he 
would help the Mohammedans. This fort was 
garrisoned by some lOO of the Soudanese ; some 200 
more, with Selim Bey, were at Ntebe, on the Lake, 
some twenty-tive miles from here ; and another 150 
with Major Owen, away in the Toro forts. On 
Saturday morning, 17th June, Captain Macdonald 
came round to tell us that Selim Bey had sent him 
a message, the night before, that nothing must be 
done respecting the Mohammedans without con- 
sulting him, and that if the king (Mwanga) fought 
against the Mohammedans, he would be fighting 
with him (the Bey). Captain Macdonald had, he 
told us, decided to take the bull by the horns : he 
had sent for Messrs. Gedge and Reddie to come up 
at once with their 100 Swahilis from Ntebe ; they 
would be in that afternoon. He intended, at three 


o'clock, to parade the Soudanese at the Fort as 
usual and tell them that the Bey had mutinied, and 
ask those who were for him (Captain Macdonald) to 
go off to one side and those for the Bey to the other, 
when he proposed disarming the latter; also he 
intended to tell the Mohammedans that they must 
give up their four leading chiefs as a pledge of their 
peaceful intentions, by that evening, or he would 
order the Protestants to attack them next morning. 
So he wished us to go up to the fort at mid-day, that 
the presence of a large number of Europeans might 
overawe the Soudanese. He then went to the 
French, who also agreed to come up. 

So w^e went up ; the Soudanese all protested their 
loyalty, and Captain Macdonald got the Moham- 
medan chiefs and we thought it was all over. So 
we went back to our places that Saturday night. 

However, first thing on Saturday morning was a 
note from Captain Macdonald, asking us to go over 
at once. Gedge and Reddie had come in in the 
night, and the Bey had told the latter that, in case 
of war, he meant to help the Mohammedans. When 
Reddie suggested that this might mean fighting 
against the Europeans, he shrugged his shoulders. 
So Captain Macdonald, considering the circum- 
stances very serious, had decided to disarm the 
Soudanese. As soon as we reached the fort, Captain 
Macdonald asked me to translate the following into 
Luganda, and to explain it to the Katikiro : — 
' Whereas Selim Bey has mutinied, and whereas 
the common law is not sufficient for the emergency, 
I hereby declare that martial law is in force through- 


out this country of U.c^anda until further notice' I 
have missed out a few words defining the common 
law, but this gives the sense. 

He then armed all the Swahilis, 150 or so, and us 
Europeans, and put the Maxim gun in position, and 
marched the Soudanese down below, and, after 
explaining things to them in a speech, ordered them 
to lay down their arms, which, thank God ! they did 
at once. 

Meanwhile, the excitement among the Baganda 
was increasing ; the Mohammedans had brought up 
300 or 500 guns in the night, and had already beaten 
their war drums. I interpreted for Captain 
Macdonald when he was speaking to Mbogo (the 
late Mohammedan king, who had been kept at 
Kampala all through), and the Mohammedan chiefs, 
who had been given up on the previous da\', so I can 
tell you exactly what he told them. He told Mbogo 
that all his men, with guns, must go off at once to 
Xatete, the Mohammedan quarter; that if all had 
not gone by noon, he (Mbogo) would be responsible. 
They all went, so Mbogo has saved himself. 

He then told the three Mohammedan chiefs to 
send to their people and order them back to their 
country places, and that, if the Mohammedans 
fought, he should shoot all three. They said that, 
if one of their number went, the Mohammedans 
would listen to him, but that they would not mind 
a mere message. So one of them was allowed to 
go on promise of return, but he never came back. 
During this interview, Mbogo came, and in great 
fear and almost with tears, upbraided Juma, the 


chief of the Mohammedans, with writing to his 
people to come up and fight, saying that he had 
been against it all through. 

About one o'clock, the Katikiro sent a message 
that the Mohammedans were not going, so Captain 
Macdonald sent a message to them by one of 
Mbogo's men that he w^ould be there in an hour 
with the Maxim gun, and if he found them there he 
would attack them. Twenty minutes later, we 
heard the guns firing, in the Natete direction, and 
we knew that war was inevitable. A few 
minutes later, a message came from the Katikiro, 
that the Mohammedans had attacked them, and 
Captain Williams sent back the message, 'Dispose 
of them all.' The next news was a wounded man, 
whose boy told me that the Mohammedans were in 
flight, and the pursuit was kept up right to the 
boundary of the Mohammedan country. At mid- 
day on the Monday, the Protestants (all the Roman 
Catholics, led by the priests, had flitted on Saturday 
night) came back to ask w^hether they should drive 
the Mohammedans right out. Captain Macdonald 
had intended and expected that they would do so, 
but, as they had spared them of their own accord, 
he told them to leave them and he would go down 
and see their chiefs when he had finished matters at 

Messages were accordingly sent to those who had 
not fought to stay quietly where they were, and the 
Europeans would go dow^n and see them and 
arrange matters. I heard the Katikiro saying 
yesterday to the king that they must do all they 


can to save them. I think that in this they ha\c 
showed themselves no unworthy disciples of their 
God and Saviour : in judgment, they have 
remembered mercy ; in the flush of victory, with 
the enemy running before them and all their 
property in their mercy, they voluntarily refrained ; 
the first time, perhaps, that such a thing has 
happened in the history of Uganda. 

However, I've not finished my story. Captain 
Macdonald asked us to stay at Kampala till the 
trouble was over, as our presence would, more than 
anything, intimidate the Bey and the Soudanese ; so 
we stayed, and some of us took a couple of hours 
at night going round to see that the Guard was 
all right. Yesterday (Monday), about mid-day, 
news came in that the Bey was on the move, 
intending, apparently, to skirt the capital and join 
the Mohammedans. The Protestants had just 
returned, 3,000 guns, and they were told to go out 
and intercept him, and kill them every one. But 
it proved to be a false alarm ; the Bey had sent up 
ten men with guns, and twenty others to say that 
he was ready to obey Captain Macdonald in every- 
thing, and to explain away his messages to the 
Captain and his words to Mr. Reddie. This 
morning (Tuesday) Captain Macdonald and four 
other Europeans w^ith the Maxim, and 500 Baganda 
with guns, and, of course, innumerable spearmen, 
have gone to Ntebe to settle the Bey. They 
anticipate that the Soudanese will all be loyal and 
lay down their arms, and I expect that tlie Be} , 
who was the real cause of all this trouble and 


Sunday's bloodshed, and who, but for Captain 
Macdonald's prompt action, might have had all of 
us in chains — as he once had Emin — will be shot. 

Juma, the Mohammedan chief, is in the chain 
gang ; Mbogo is here, very cheerful apparently, 
because he is exonerated from blame ; I hope it will 
be possible to spare Juma's life: he is quite a young 
man and he has had a terrible lesson." 

" Namirembe, 

Saturday, July 12th. 

The Soudanese laid down their arms all right 
and the Bey was court-martialed and condemned 
to be degraded and sent away to an island on the 
Lake, Nsagi by name. Last Monday, all the 
Protestants went off to drive out the Mohammedans. 
No news yet except that half the Mohammedans 
want peace." 

I have not yet mentioned the death of Captain 
Portal, by sunstroke, about a month ago. He was 
buried up at the Church by Hannington and De 

In all this. Captain Macdonald has acted in the 
promptest, bravest, and wisest manner. God gave 
the right man for the right place." 

Few will doubt that the English Missionaries 
were right in standing by the British authorities. 
They were not asked to take arms against the people 
of the country, but to help to overawe by their 
presence the mutinous Soudanese troops who were 
foreigners to the country. Had they refused, it is 
possible that the British administration would have 


been swept away, and Mohammedanism, with its 
slave-raiding and cruelty, have reigned supreme. 
Pilkington's story of these events is a clear 
one. It may, however, be interesting to give 
Captain Macdonald's account of his appeal to the 

" I visited the Church Missionary Society in 
Namirembe, where I saw Mr. Pilkington, who at 
once summoned the Head of the Mission, the Rev. 
J. Roscoe, at that time engaged at the church in 
superintending classes. To these two gentlemen 
the situation was explained. I told them my hopes 
that a rapid initiative would defeat the proposed 
combination in detail, and that the best chance of 
success appeared to be in all the Europeans showing 
a united front, irrespective of creed or profession 
At the same time, should they prefer to do so, they 
were free to withdraw to the Eastern provinces 
while there was yet time ; but I explained that such 
a proceeding would necessarily have a very dispirit- 
ing effect on the Protestant Waganda and might 
lead to their flight from the capital. Other members 
of the Mission were called in, and it need hardly be 
said that, in an assemblage of Englishmen con- 
fronted with a crisis like this, there was no dis- 
sentient voice, b|it one and all decided to stand 
or fall by me as the representative of British 

I then went to the Roman Catholic Mission 
Station, at Rubaga, and explained the situation and 
proposals, in almost the same words that I had 
used at Namirembe. Here, too, the Missionaries 


resolved to stand by the Government. Both 
Missions having thus decided to support me, it was 
arranged that the Missionaries should come to 
Kampala in the afternoon — not in a body, so as to 
create alarm, but dropping in by twos and threes." 

After all was over, the Consul wrote thanking 
the Missionaries for their *' valuable services," 
and adding that " the record of their invaluable 
services will be laid before Her Majesty's Secretary 
of State at the first opportunity." 

One of the most striking points in connection 
with the suppression of the mutiny was the part 
played by the Protestant Baganda. Captain Mac- 
donald particularly mentions the Sekibobo, the title 
by which Nikodemo, one of the most important 
Protestant chiefs, was known, who was with him 
when he went to arrest Selim Bey. 

Writing of this incident in his recent book. Captain 
Macdonald says : — 

"The Sekibobo managed his men excellently. 
When I went to arrest the Bey, several small 
columns were draw^n up concealed by a fold in the 
ground, but ready to rush into the Soudanese 
quarter had the Bey's private following offered any 
resistance ; and when, before nightfall, a European 
inspected the Sekibobo's arrangement of pickets 
and sentries, there was really nothing to alter. 
With this stern old Waganda chief, it was like a 
return to the ancient Covenanting days in Scotland : 
for, every evening, the day's work closed with a 
prayer-meeting conducted by the Sekibobo in 
person, and always largely attended by his follow^ers. 


The discipline he maintained in his contingent was 
particularly good and he carried out my orders in 
the spirit, not merely in the letter." 

Pilkington, referring to his death nearly two 
years later, speaks of him as follows: "We have 
had a great loss ; our dear brother Nikodemo, kind, 
good, earnest, Christian man (the Sekibobo, i.e., 
chief of Kyagwe), also one of those ordained deacon, 
has been taken from us. As great a loss as 
Sembera's personally to us and to the work : the 
Lord who gave him can fill up the vacant place.'* 

The great change is all the more remarkable 
when it is realized from what degrading superstitions 
the heathen of Uganda have been delivered. 

The nature of this is described in a letter from 
Pilkington, shortly after the mutiny, as follows : — 

" You ask about the religion of the people here. 
They had an elaborate religion ; each county or 
province had its tutelar god (lubale) ; each god had 
several shrines, w^here there lived the priest and the 
' Mandwa,' i.e., a man supposed to be possessed by 
the god ; people gave offerings which priest and 
Mandwa shared, besides which a great many 
gardens were given up to the lubale. 

People came and enquired of them as at an oracle 
the priest was the medium, the Mandwa gave the 
answers. Besides this, the spirits of dead people 
were supposed to possess the Mandwas in the same 
way as gods, especially the spirits of dead kings. 
Mutesa, before he died, told the people that if, after 
liis death, anyone professed to be possessed by his 
spirit, they were to tell him to read an Arabic book. 


and, if he failed, they would know he was an 
impostor as he (Mutesa) knew how to read it ; and 
this actually happened, and the Mandwa was well 
beaten for his pains. 

The same king had a favourite dog which died, 
and a man professed to be possessed by its spirit, 
and would do nothing but bark ! 

When a man is possessed in this way, and some 
beer is brought in, they all drink, and the spirit 
leaves him ; then the Mandwa is sure to upbraid his 
friends for not leaving any for him, and when they 
are surprised, he explains that he didn't drink any, 
it was the god. The great rivers or marshes, too, 
were regarded as gods, and, before crossing, they 
would throw^ in coffee-berries, or human beings, to 
propitiate them. Periodically, they sacrificed human 
beings to both river and other gods, 500 at a time. 
There were special places where these human 
sacrifices were made till only a few years ago." 

The mutiny having been thus vigorously dealt 
with, peace was speedily re-established, and 
Missionary work, which had been suspended for a 
short period, was carried on with redoubled energy. 

Selim Bey was sent away from the country, but 
died on his way to the coast. 



Hitherto we have dealt chiefly with the U^^^anda 
Mission, and the part played in it by the chief 
character in our story, from what may be called the 
external point of view. 

We have watched him as he first took his place 
in the Missionary circle at Mengo, daily gaining in 
influence over the natives as he grew more and 
more familiar with their language ; his counsel in- 
creasingly valued by his colleagues, in many a 
diflicult problem connected with the work, and 
appealed to by the British authorities to act as their 
interpreter on every occasion when accuracy and 
secrecy were particularly needed. 

In his hands, during this time, the translation of 
the Bible had made rapid progress, and the number 
of readers became so great that their eagerness for 
books could not be satisfied. 

These external results, the only thing which the 
world looks for, might have satisfied some, but they 
were not enough for George Pilkington. 

It is true that there were outward and visible 
signs which betokened prosperit}-, but was there in 
proportion the inward and spiritual grace ? It was 


this for which he sought, but the dearth of spiritual 
results was to him and his fellow Missionaries a 
keen disappointment. Pilkington himself was so 
much discouraged, that he spoke of giving up 
Missionary work altogether, unless some change 
took place. For a time, it is said that he used to 
absent himself from the prayer meetings held 
amongst the Missionaries. 

In this state of mind he went alone for a visit to 
the Island of Kome, and it was there that he learnt 
the great secret of the indwelling power of the Holy 
Spirit, which transformed his whole life. 

Speaking of this at a great gathering of students 
in Liverpool, in January, 1896, he said : — 

" If it had not been that God enabled me, after 
three years in the Mission field, to accept by faith 
the gift of the Holy Spirit, I should have given up 
the work. I could not have gone on as I was then. 
A book by David, the Tamil evangelist, shewed me 
that my life was not right, that I had not the power 
of the Holy Ghost. I had consecrated myself 
hundreds of times, but I had not accepted God's gift. 
I saw now that God commanded me to be filled with 
the Spirit. Then I read, ' All things whatsoever 
ye pray and ask for, believe that ye have received 
them, and ye shall have them,' and, claiming 
this promise, I received the Holy Spirit. 

Another verse which impressed me was, St. John 
xvi., 7 — 'It is expedient for you that I go away; 
for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come 
unto you ; but if I go I will send Him unto you.' " 

But perhaps the clearest view of the influence on 


his life of this remarkable experience, may be gained 
from a letter written by him to his mother on May 
30th, 1895. He writes : — " Next Sunday is 
Whit-Sunday. Oh, for another Pentecost here, and 
at home. ' He that believeth on Me out of his belly 
shall flow rivers (not a stream or a single river) of 
living water. Greater works than these shall ye do, 
because I go unto the Father.' Where are these 
rivers and where are these mighty works ? We 
must ask rather, where ' is he that believeth on 
Him ? ' Surely He is not unfaithful to a single line 
of His promise. What w^onder that infidelity 
abounds, when the worst infidelity of all is in our 
own hearts. What wonder that Popery increases, 
when we have dethroned the Holy Spirit from our 
hearts. What wonder that Mohammedanism defies 
us, and still occupies vast fields once held for 
Christ, when Mohammed's successors can still ask 
as the false prophet himself did, ' Where, but in 
Mohammed is the promised Paraclete ? ' Even 
the Mohammedans here, ignorant as they are, ask 
that. Praise be to God, many of our people here can 
answer, ' In my heart and life.' May abundant 
fruit of the Spirit in our lives prove our witness 

The people here are hungry and thirsty for the 
Holy Ghost, they are searching the New and (as far 
as they have it) the Old Testament to see if these 
things which we tell them be so. I am looking for 
a wonderful outpouring of the Holy Spirit on them. 
' I will pour water on him that is thirsty, and 
floods on the dry ground.' (Is. 44, 3.) From God 


has this thirst come in our souls here for the Holy 
Spirit, and He who gave the thirst is also satisfying 
it, and will satisfy it to the full. 

It would be an easier thing for the Church 
of Uganda to evangelize in twenty years all 
unevangelized Africa than it was for the Primitive 
Church to evangelize as far as she did in the same 
period. The Waganda are born Missionaries, they 
are splendid travellers, and in ability, a good deal 
above, so far as is known, the nations round them ; 
their country is an island in a vast sea of ignorance ; 
they have been brought in contact with, and have 
learnt to contend with, the three forms of darkness 
which they will meet in Africa : Heathenism, 
Mohammedanism, and Popery. What we want 
first, middle, and last, is the Holy Spirit. The 
Holy Spirit is Christ in the heart. See Rom. viii. 
and Eph. iii. 

This reminds me that you once wrote as if you 
thought that I had meant to say that, till eighteen 
months ago, I had not had the presence or the help 
of the Holy Spirit in my work. I never meant to 
convey that impression. I distinguish between the 
presence of the Holy Spirit with us and in us ; our 
blessed Lord said to His disciples, ' He is with you 
and shall be in you.' John xiv. It is the birthright 
of every Christian to have the Holy Spirit in him, 
to be full of the Holy Ghost as St. Paul commanded 
the Ephesians to be, but I believe that my unbelief 
and other sins was a hindrance to the Holy Spirit 
in my own heart till about eighteen months ago, 
when God Himself, I humbly believe, opened, or 


enabled me to 'open the door,' and He came in, 
according to His gracious promise, to sup with me, 
even me, and I with Him. Amazing condescension 
and mercy to such an awful, awful, awful sinner as 
I know myself to be." 

On December 7th, 1893, Pilkington returned 
to Mengo from Kome, and everyone noticed 
the wonderful change in Him. His very face told 
of the reality of the change. His boys noticed it, 
the Christians of Uganda were conscious of it and 
all who came in contact with him, and that not only 
from his words but in a thousand little ways which 
speak more forcibly than the most eloquent sermon. 
But it was not only Pilkington who was thus 
blessed, others of the mission party had been led 
to seek a special blessing from God, and thus thev 
were able to rejoice together. 

Of this Baskerville writes on December 8th: — 
'' Pilkington got back yesterday from Kome about 
5.30 ; he came over to dinner with us at Roscoe's, 
and told of the glorious times he had had on 
Kome. He told us, too, how he had definitely, 
while away, received by faith the Baptism of the 
Holy Ghost, and manifestation of His power had 
followed. People had testified to the saving power 
of Christ, including Christians of some standing, I 
mean some who had been baptized but who as yet 
had not really accepted Christ. One man, a 
genuine native of Kome, stood up and said, ' You 
see me a native born, not a Waganda, not a native 
of Kome, do not call me any longer by my old 
name, for I have been born anew.* Others said, 



' I was blind, now I see.' Praise to God for His 

Baskerville continues : " It has been our private 
wish for some time to have some mission services 
here. We can scarcely hope for special missioners 
until a railway comes, and it occurred to us that 
God wants to use us. We all, in prayer, dedicated 
ourselves to Him, and asked Him to baptize us 
anew. This morning we began ; we had not told 
the people but w^ent up after prayer at the usual 
time, believing for a blessing. Pilkington conducted 
the meeting. We began with our version of ' Have 
you been to Jesus for the cleansing power,' and then 
Pilkington prayed. He began by speaking about a 
man, a very sad case which has been the indirect 
cause of these meetings. A certain Musa Yakuganda 
has come to us and told us that he gets no profit from 
our religion, and wants to have his name given out 
as having returned to the state of a Heathen. Asked 
if he knew what he said, he replied, ' Do you think 
I have been reading seven years, and do not under- 
stand ? Your religion does not profit me at all. I 
have done with it.' Pilkington pointed out what a 
cause of shame this was to us. . . . I cannot on 
paper describe every detail of the meeting. On two 
occasions, some hundreds were all praying for for- 
giveness, others praising in the simplest language. 
We left the church at twelve, having been 
there since 8.30. Roscoe is now with some of the 
teachers, and Pilkington has some boys in the next 
room. We go up to the church directly to another 


The Rev. J. Roscoe writes of the services on the 
next day, December gth : — " We have had another 
day of great spiritual blessing. At each service God 
was present, and souls were brought into union w^th 
Jesus Christ. The beaming faces of some who found 
peace yesterday were sufficient testimony to their 
changed state, and words were unnecessary. The 
Katikiro wrote his testimony ; in September he found 
peace, but has now entered into fuller blessing. 
Each morning we have had fully 500 present at 
these meetings. This afternoon, we had a specially 
solemn service for those who had the assurance of 
salvation, about 200 being present. We expect from 
the Lord showers of blessing to-morrow, and await 
the outpouring of His Spirit in faith. 

loth (Sunday). We are in the midst of a great 
spiritual revival. To the Lord be praise and glory 
and honour ! Our joy is beyond expression. After 
the morning service, fully 200 stayed to be spoken 
to, and I believe the majority w^ent away rejoicing in 
the Lord." 

Baskerville adds : " Musa has come back. It is 
grand. He was in the Church when Pilkington told 
the people about him, at the first meeting, on Friday. 
No one dreamt of his being there. The Lord had 
brought him." 

The Rev. Ernest Millargives the following account 
of the mission : — "The majorit}' of those converted 
could read a little, but some could not read at- all, 
and, on being converted, at once wished to learn to 
read. One of Pilkington's bayima (cow boys) came 
out very brightly, and told the others about God's 


love, the consequence being that on the next day 
one of our Bayima, whom we had previously not 
thought much of, came to me, and said he had 
accepted the gift of God, eternal life, and now wished 
to have a reading book, that he might learn to read. 
Needless to say, I gave him a book at once, and we 
can see the change in his life — he is quite a different 
man, and full of joy ; since then, another cowboy 
has come forward. This is the more wonderful, 
because the Bayima are generally very backward in 
learning to read. (The Bayima are the tribe whose 
especial care is that of looking after cattle ; there is 
a proverb to the effect that you can more easily kill 
a Muyima than you can take his cattle.) The 
Mission only lasted three days, but the effect will, I 
trust, last for ever. One remarkable feature of this 
work, in the eyes of outsiders, is that the great chiefs 
in the land were not afraid to confess that they had 
not hitherto accepted Christ, and that they wished 
to do so. At the service at the king's, on the last 
day of the mission, one chief, who had been one of 
the leading teachers, but had been suspended for 
misconduct, confessed, in front of the king and his 
boys, that he had not previously accepted the Lord 
Jesus as his Saviour, but did so then. We had 
special meetings for the deepening of the spiritual 
life during the week which followed the mission, and 
we trust that many were helped." 

One other missionary, Mr. R. H. Leakey, gives 
his impressions of these wonderful three days ; he 
writes : — 

'' You will have heard from other Missionaries of 


the special services here, on December 8th, gth, 
and loth, and of the wonderful blessing we had. 
Many, who had long been looked upon as leading 
Christians, realized a new force and power in their 
Christian life. Some said to us, ' Why have you 
been here so long and never told us this glad news 
before ? ' All we could say was, ' You have been 
been told, but have not believed it.' May God 
forgive us for any lack of power, or of faith, or of 
prayer on our part. . . . Before the services we 
prayed with power to God, and then went to them, 
expecting great blessings, and we got more than we 
had dared to expect. I never in my life so realized 
the power of the Spirit of God present to save and 
working in our midst as I did at those meetings." 

The reason why it was necessary to hold the 
Mission, without time for preparation, was that 
the Baganda army was about to start for Bunyoro, 
to fight with King Kabarega, and Pilkington elected 
to accompany the Baganda troops, as their chaplain. 
Of this, Baskerville writes : — 

" 13th. — Pilkington has gone. On Monday night 
he told us that God was calling him to go out to the 
war with the Baganda. We all felt it to be the 
right thing, and all has been arranged well, and he 
left this morning. He will be thrown in contact 
daily with hundreds of people, who never come near 
the capital, drawn from every corner of the country, 
many of them Roman Catholics and Mohammedans. 
He is not travelling with the white men from the 
Fort, but with the Baganda. He wanted at first to 
go without a tent, but the people would not hear of 


it, nor indeed would we. They have f^iven him 
about ten porters. The people are all delighted 
that he has gone — their joy was very touching. In 
fact, we are all about as full of joy as we can 
hold, and the people are particularly rejoiced that 
Pilkington has gone. All say what a unique oppor- 
tunity he will have. He has two cows with him, 
and he will, I am sure, be well looked after by the 
people. Last night we had a very solemn service 
as a farewell, the Colonel, and all the men at the 
Fort came, but one. Pilkington preached a short 
sermon, and several of them particularly thanked us." 

Captain Villiers, speaking of Pilkington's presence 
with the Baganda army on this occasion, remarks 
that it w^as " the cause of their abandoning all their 
former ideas of warfare, and behaving as well as 
civilized troops." It may be well to add that 
Pilkington was strictly a non-combatant on this 
occasion. News received from him by the Mission- 
aries in Mengo is given by Mr. Baskerville, who 
writes : — 

" Two letters have come from Pilkington since he 
left for the war, the second from Kadoma's, ten 
miles over the Buganda frontier and their first 
camping-place in Bunyoro. In his first letter 
he says, ' Some twenty-five have professed salvation 
since w^e left Mengo ' ; in his second, he says, ' The 
Mohammedans are listening eagerly, even their 
chiefs come to hear. I have preached to great 
crowds four times, numbering from i,ooo to 2,000, 
and on Sunday Zacharia preached a capital sermon 
to some 2,000 people." " 


On returning from the expedition against 
Kabarega, Pilkington paid a visit to Singo, where 
Mr. Fisher was at work. Here he was greatly 
struck with the plan, adopted by Mr. Fisher, of 
erecting reading houses, or, as the people called 
them, " Synagogi," where they could be instructed 
by native teachers under the direction of more 
experienced workers, these in turn being supervised 
by the European in charge of the district. 

On returning to Mengo, Pilkington proposed that 
this plan should be adopted much more widely, and 
he and Baskerville decided to delay their return 
to England until this new movement could be 

Thus it became possible to bring the more 
distant places into closer touch with the centre of 
the work, and the revival, which had started in the 
capital, spread in the same year far and wide through 
the outlying stations of the Mission. 

A letter written by Pilkington on the ist of April, 
1894, gives some account of the sending forth of 
new teachers. He writes : — 

'' A good many teachers — between thirty and forty 
— have offered to go out and teach in the country 
parts ; we had a sort of ' dismissal ' last Sunday, 
when thirteen were sent, and another seven are to 
be dismissed this afternoon, including a very faithful 
boy of mine called Musa (Moses), who will be a 
great loss to me, but, I believe, a great gain to the 

Leakey came back yesterday from South of Lake 
with 120 loads of books (a load is 70 lbs.), i.e, three 


and a half tons, 800 New Testaments, only I wish 
it were 8000. 

Captain Macdonald is going home. We owe him 
a great debt. He saved this country. He has won 
the confidence of all the people by firmness, good 
sense, and kindness. We are very sorry indeed that 
he is going ; we shall hardly see his equal again. 

We hope very much that he may come back 
here again. 

I hope before long to pay a visit to the Islands ; 
we hear there has been an enormous increase of 
'reading' in them lately : and so I hope to find large 
congregations to whom to preach the Gospel, and I 
expect many will be saved through the mercy of 
God and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit." 

At the end of July and during the month of 
August, Pilkington visited the Islands in company 
the Rev. Ernest Millar. In most cases they were 
received with the greatest enthusiasm. Mission 
services were held with splendid results. Candidates 
for baptism were examined and baptized, and a 
great impulse given to reading. One serious 
interruption to the work at Mengo occurred not long 
after his return from the journey, which he records 
as follows, writing on 4th of October, 1894 : — 

" Last Tuesday I was sitting in this room when 
my cook, a woman, rushed in, saying, ' The Church 
has fallen, and I don't know whether people haven't 
been killed in it.' There was at the time a 
tremendous storm of wind and rain. Thank God 
no people had been killed. Walker w^as last out of 
the Church. He refused to believe that it was 


falling, till he saw the great poles actually coming 
down on him, and only just got out when down it came. 
The poles apparently sound, and not leaning in the 
least, had rotted inside and broke off one after the 
other under the great pressure of wind, aided by the 
enormous weight of the grass roof, drenched by the 
downpour of rain. 

It seems a calamity, but we believe that God's 
hand is in it ; I daresay, as in Acts viii., he wants 
to scatter our work more in the dark surrounding 

They are going to build another with a different 
kind of wood, palm trees, and we hope on a some- 
what improved principle. But it is difficult to make 
so vast a building safe without mortar or ironwork. 

. . . , We have had great encouragement 
among the Mohammedans lately. Two of them, 
friends of mine, converted I believe, and two 
others, leading men among them, intending to 
come out. 

I believe that there is a Spirit of enquiry among 
the Roman Catholics such as I have never seen 
before. Not less than three or four of them daily, 
often more, come to see me to talk about things, in 
ones and twos. They are on the most friendly 
terms with me. 

Before the Church fell, 2,000 at least w^ere coming 
every week-day morning, besides, I should think, at 
least 7,000 more in the 200 country Churches. On 
Sunday not less than 20,000 in the various Churches. 
Of these, 6,000 were under regular instruction in 
classes ; and this vast work extendi n^^ riirht down 


to Koki and Toro on one side, and Busoga on the 
other, 200 miles in one direction and lOO in the 
other, has to be directed by twelve Europeans, often 
down with fever, and knowing the language very 
imperfectly. The natives can't yet organise ; they 
are good when led, they seem unable to lead yet. 
Oh that they may be led by the Holy Ghost ! They 
are improving, one of them is doing a grand 
work about ten miles to the north of Mengo, really 
organising, I think. May God give us many like 
him. He used to be a strong opponent of present 
salvation, but thank God, no longer so. 

I want to finish translating the Old Testament, 
and that, with seeing after the teachers, who have 
been sent into the country, teaching daily a class of 
would-be teachers in Romans, and holding a service, 
half in the open air, in the neighbourhood every 
afternoon, leaves me but little time for corres- 

The Mohammedans here tell me that they believe 
and love the Lord Jesus, and I believe that, in a 
sense, they do ; but it is not the same Jesus that I 

Writing again on Sunday, 4th November, 1894, 
he continues: — "The work goes on wonderfully; 
our reading sheets have run out ; we are anxiously 
expecting more. Every afternoon I am now going 
for an hour or two, to the Mohammedan quarter, 
Natete, the C. M. S. Station in Mackay's days, and 
have a sort of friendly discussion, consisting chiefly 
of reading the Scriptures, with the Mohammedans ; 
they have themselves invited me, and we are great 


friends, they are not like the bigoted Mohammedans 
of India, and still they are quite bigoted enough. 
They ask me questions such as : 'Is Jesus the Son 
of God ? ' ' What about Abraham ? ' ' Why don't 
you keep the law of Moses ? ' Which I answer by 
reading, e.g., Heb. i, Mat. iii., i6, 17, Rom. iv.. 
Acts XV., and they listen with utmost attention. 
But their most interesting question is about Him 
whom Jesus said was to come (the Holy Spirit — 
they say Mohammed), and it is glorious to have 
such an opportunity of testifying to the reality and 
the power of the Blessed Spirit. This is the lost 
Truth, the loss of which gave Satan the oppor- 
tunity of introducing both Mohammedanism and 
Popery. Of course, you know that in the Koran (of 
which I have a translation) is mentioned the Trinity, 
as Mohammed supposed Christians to believe, the 
Father, Son, and Mary ! 

We have seen during the last year many hardened 
and notorious sinners (baptized though they were) 
definitely brought to Christ, and openly professing 
to be saved (one of them the other day, just after 
his conversion). When we told the Church Council 
that he wanted to go out as a teacher, the proposal 
was met with uncontrollable laughter as they didn't 
know about his conversion ; and he is now living 
a life w^hich shews to all the world, the reality 
of the change. 

The Roman Catholic version of St. Matthew 
(with copious notes from the Fathers) is expected in 
a day or two. Thank God for this." 

The work of that vear, which had been a most 


eventful one in the history of the Uganda Church, 
is thus summed up in Pilkington's annual letter for 
1894 :— 

" Mengo, 

December 12th, 1894. 

Since my return from Unyoro — where I had 
wonderful opportunities of preaching the Gospel to 
many who probably would not have heard it other- 
wise, and of getting into closer touch and sympathy, 
with the Waganda — my work has been chiefly that of 
looking after the rapid extension of the work into 
the country, which has been one of the most marked 
features of the year ; in fact, I have acted, I may 
say, as secretary to the Church Council, as far as 
this special work is concerned. I have also done 
language work, especially the revision of the New 
Testament, with Henry Wright Duta ; but I pro- 
pose, in this letter, only to review the work of 
extension into the country parts and neighbouring 
countries during the past year. 

At the beginning of this year, there were not, 
probably, more than twenty country churches (or 
reading-rooms or ' synagogues ' ) ; there are now 
not less than 200, of which the ten largest would 
contain 4,500 persons ; the average capacity of all 
would be, perhaps, 150. In these there now 
assemble every Sunday not less than 20,000 souls to 
hear the Gospel ; on week days not less than 4,000 
assemble (these numbers are exclusive of the 
capital). The first teachers paid by the Church 
Council were dismissed in April ; there are now 131 
of these teachers, occupying eighty-five stations, of 


whom just t\vent\' are stationed outside Uganda 
proper, and may be regarded as more or less foreign 
Missionaries ; those in Usoga and Uvuma are 
supported by the C. M. S. This by no means 
represents the whole of the work that is being done 
in the country ; there are some places, notably 
Jungo, some fifteen miles south of Mengo, where a 
splendid work is being done, and there are probably 
not less than twenty teachers at work under Henry's 
able superintendence, and not one of these teachers, 
nor Henry himself, is reckoned in the above. At 
Bu'si again, an island near Jungo, there are only 
two of these regular teachers, and yet there are 
three churches and about 2,000 people under in- 
struction. This extension into the country has 
produced, as might have been expected, visible 
fruit in the enormous increase in the number of 
those under definite instruction for baptism. At 
this time last year the catechumens numbered 170 ; 
during the year some 800 (I have not the exact 
number at hand) have been baptized, and there are 
now 1,500 catechumens. 

A blow has been struck at the numerous and 
absurd slanders current about baptism by the work 
of the Native deacons, who have, whenever possible, 
taken baptism in the country churches. While 
writing this letter I have received a note from 
Zachariah Kangao, who went to his country place 
some days ago to baptize some candidates ; he says 
that a great number collected to see the baptisms, 
and went away saying, ' It was all lies they told us 
about eating snakes" tails and human flesh,' Sec, 


One slander he mentions, which I think is not onh^ 
interesting but most encouraging — that baptism 
consisted ^ in making an incision in the head and 
rubbing in a powerful medicine which kills the old 
heart, and then there comes in its place a new 
religious heart that does not lust for anything,' a 
glorious Heathen testimony, I take it, to the renew- 
ing power of the Gospel of Christ. 

Then, further, the work is being extended by the 
fuller organisation of the country churches. It has 
been decided to elect six churchwardens whenever 
the number of baptized men is not less than ten ; 
this organising has only just been begun, but we 
have seen enough of resultant activity to lead us to 
hope that the effects, when the scheme is complete 
and in full working order, will be most important. 

To sum up, the year's work has been by far the 
most encouraging that I have been privileged to 
witness, and I venture to think that the Church 
here is only just beginning its course of testimony 
and victory. I anticipate that next year will see an 
enormous accession. Is the C.M.S. prepared for 
the calls upon its resources which the rapid increase 
of the work here might mean ? What if we should 
require a hundred thousand copies of the New 
Testament in the course of the next two or three 
years, and say a million reading-sheets ? this would 
make about 1,500 loads; how are they to be brought 
here in addition to everything else ? 

Let me add one word about reinforcements. Is 
it not obvious that our present staff is not nearly 
sufficient ? There are, thank God, several most 


able Natives, real soul-winners too ; but they are not 
yet fully qualified to organise and keep books, nor to 
train people for this work. Europeans are needed 
for a few years in considerable numbers ; men of 
ability and education and spiritual power are 
needed. Such then would, as far as one can fore- 
see, be the means in God's hand of putting into 
the field here, say, each of them, ten Native 
Missionaries in a few years, each of the ten in 
most w^ays equal, in many ways superior, to any 
European ; therefore, I venture to say, that one 
European of the kind required now is worth ten, five 
years hence. May the Lord of the Harvest open 
the eyes of those at home to see it ! " 



In the summer of 1895, Pilkington and Baskerville 
came home on furlough. They travelled by the 
northern route which passes through British territory, 
and it is by this route the railwa}^ is being con- 
structed, the commencement of which has proved 
the most certain indication of the intention of the 
British Government to maintain the Uganda Pro- 
tectorate. Mr. Baskerville gives a graphic account 
of the difficulties of the march and the sufferings 
of the porters, which will be at an end when the 
railway is completed. He writes : — 

" Though the north road has been proved to be 
far more healthy for Europeans, yet it is a far more 
terrible journey for the native porters. There are 
the waterless districts near the coast, and the long 
stretch of foodless country, stretching from Kikuyu 
to Mumia's in Kavirondo, a three wrecks' journey, 
for which food has to be carried in addition to the 
ordinary load. This foodless district is very high 
ground, rising over the Mau escarpment to 8,500 
feet, and is consequently very cold, and the porters 
suffer much. Then, too, man-eating lions seldom 
leave any caravans alone, and highwaymen are 
always on the look-out for stragglers. 



Let me recall a few facts connected with our 
home journey last summer. We laid in our food 
supplies in Busoga and distributed them between all 
members of the caravan. The ordinary African 
does not look far ahead, and it is not an uncommon 
thing for a man to throw away a large portion ot his 
rations, keeping just enough for his immediate need, 
or some will eat up three weeks' food in one, and 
then tell you they are starving. The Government 
provide all their porters with a blanket and water- 
proof sheet for crossing the Mau escarpment ; the 
men constantly sell these to natives of Kavirondo, 
and then die of cold. One day we had just come 
to a river, when we saw on the opposite bank an 
up-country caravan approaching. We waited and 
watched it go by. Many of the men looked greatly 
emaciated, some mere skeletons. Some were offer- 
ing things in sale for flour. We had not gone more 
than a mile when I noticed a man by the side of the 
path. He had no earthly belongings except a rag of 
cloth round his loins. We asked him who he was. 
He said he had been carrying the head man's tent, 
but that morning could not manage it, so his load 
had been given to another, and he had been left. 
That night he would have been eaten by hyenas. 
He had dysentery and a bad cough. We gave him 
brandy and milk, and helped him along that day, 
feeding him at night in camp with arrowroot. The 
next day he started walking, but arrangements had 
to be made to carry him. By no force of argument 
could we persuade our Swahili headman to leave 
behind a load of drums he was takintr down to a 


friend. We would give him double the price. No, 
his friend wanted the drums, not the money ; for- 
tunately our provision boxes were getting light, and 
by putting two or three loads together w^e managed 
to get two bearers. The next day we were detained 
by two more sick men. We had passed many 
corpses of men and donkeys, some only recently 
dead. When we found these two men by an old 
hut in a camping place in a very wild spot just by a 
marsh, one had been there nine days without food. 
He had bad feet, an old sore had become poisoned 
by wading through marshes. He had been under 
the care of a headman, who had thought it less 
trouble to leave him, and probably reported him 
dead. We learned the headman's name and re- 
ported the matter at Kikuyu, and I trust our friend 
will get a warm punishment. Thus abandoned, 
he was found by another caravan, and robbed by 
them of all he had, food, cloth, and water calabash. 
A few days before we found him, he had been joined 
by another, and the night before a third man had 
crept in to die, and there we saw his corpse lying 
close by. Strange to say, our friend seemed quite 
cheerful, and only asked for a fire and some water. 
We made a fire and drew water for him, and fed 
him and his companion with some cooked food we 
had with us. He said, ' If when you get to the 
Ravine (a Government Station, two days' march 
away), you tell the white man to send for me, he 
will find me still alive.' Of course we could not 
leave him thus, and his companion was evidently 
dying. We managed to carry them on, one on a 


small donkey we had ; and by giving some light 
loads to our boys, we set free two men to carry the 
other. Had we met more sick men, we could not 
have carried them on, except by leaving behind 
food, or tents, or clothing, and thereby endangering 
the lives of ourselves and our own men. 

The horrors of the road for these poor porters 
can only be understood by one who has travelled on 
it. All this the railway will change, and also it 
cannot fail to check what remains, and that is a 
good deal, of the slave-trade." 

It may be added that the railway, so far as it is at 
present completed, as far as Kibwezi, is marked on 
our map of Eastern Central Africa, as well as the 
survey up to the Lake. 

On arriving at the coast, the missionaries were 
most hospitably received bv the Rev. W. E. and 
Mrs. Taylor. 

Mr. Taylor's reminiscences of their visit furnish an 
interesting review of this period. He writes : — 
'' The arrival of Baskerville and ' Pilks,' as he was 
familiarly called by his missionary comrades, caused 
quite a stir among us, his friends at the coast, when 
in August, 1895, they came to Frere Town, with 
their Waganda porters and boys. We were very 
curious to see men whose doings and labour had 
been so wonderfully honoured of God in Uganda. 
We found them very modest and retiring, which 
natural trait was further heightened by the shyness 
they felt to appear before the lady workers at Frere 
Town in their rough, up-country rig, now very much 
the rougher for an 800 miles journey on foot, without 


the possibility of a renewal of their travelling kit 
through such deserts as those they had traversed. 
However, I think a deposit of European clothes, &c., 
thatw^as awaiting Mr. Baskerville at the Accountant's 
Office, was divided between them, and they forth- 
with became more presentable ; and so in Pilkington's 
case also, the way-worn garments and ' clouted 
shoon ' were soon discarded for a more conventional, 
if not a ver}' well-fitting, garb, although he need not 
have minded, for he looked well in anything. One 
odd little matter as to his person struck me — a thick 
pile of short hair that came well down on the side of 
the neck. It struck me that this formed a covering 
to the neck where it otherwise would have been 
naked to the bitter rays of the oblique morning and 
evening sun, which are much more dangerous, be- 
cause more insidious, to the European than are the 
vertical ones. This may in part account for what I 
thought an uncommon tolerance of glare, and, there- 
fore, I think it may not be amiss to mention it. 
Also he told me, in regard to his precautions against 
sunstroke in itineration and travel, that before going 
out he would give his headgear — a pith topee — a good 
soak in water, and also place a fresh banana leaf 
within the helmet, further to protect his head, and 
then he was ready for anything, and would suffer no 
inconvenience in this way for as long a time as the 
headgear retained its dampness, when, if possible, he 
would repeat the process. 

Very soon after his arrival, we had a walk 
through Frere Town — he was staying with us in the 
Bishop's House, which Bishop Tucker had loaned to 


us, to afford us a change from Mombasa, and 
Baskerville was resident in another, and boarded 
with Mr. Binns — and one of the first things that 
struck one, was the way he could enjo}- a walk with 
his bhstered feet because of the talk I We found in 
the languages, in fact, a most absorbing topic. We 
had several such walks, which were to me full of 
instruction, as we compared notes concerning our 
respective language studies, and their bearing on 
our work. 

He told me practically what he repeated in a 
letter which I received only shortly before his death, 
of his great indebtedness to Sweet's ' Primer of 
Phonetics,' which I was privileged to have recom- 
mended Millar to take out to him in 1892. He said 
that that book had been the means of making things 
in the language clear as daylight to him, where all 
before had been like groping in the dark. He 
attributed to this book his discovery and fixing the 
rationale of the most important phonetic feature of 
the Uganda tongue — the longs and shorts in 
consonants and vowels. He also traced to my little 
book on the Proverbs of the East Africans (' African 
Aphorisms, or Saws from Swahili Land,' S.P.C.K.) 
his beginning the study and collection of the Uganda 
proverbs, which he turned to such good account in 
his Tractate on Roman Catholicism and Mohamme- 
danism, and in his Evangelistic and Pastoral work in 
Uganda. He said justly, that without the study of 
the National Proverbs, one could never properly 
know the workings of the African mind. In almost 
all these things we had come by different ways, 


to the same, or nearly the same, general conclu- 
sions. He was good enough to be present 
at the weekly Swahili lectures I was giving at that 
time to the candidates for the Language Examina- 
tions, and would give excellent illustrations of the 
matter in hand from his own experience in the 
language of Uganda; and I used to call upon him 
for a demonstration of various African sounds, 
compared with those sounds as uttered in Irish 
brogue, with which he was conversant. He was 
surprised at the similarity thus emphasized. 

Pilkington was no half-an-half Protestant, but 
withal there was no personal bitterness imported 
into his uncompromising statement of opinion in 
the Romish controversy which he had had to wage 
while in Uganda." Reference is then made by 
Mr. Taylor to some special lines of argument which 
were afterwards developed by Pilkington with great 
effect in the little book "anonya alaba," which 
will be referred to later on. There is little doubt 
that his knowledge of Ireland and the Irish gave 
him a keen insight into the difficulties of Roman 
Catholics, whilst at the same time he knew how to 
deal with such questions in a way calculated 
to attract, rather than to repel those with 
whom he came in contact. Mr. Taylor con- 
tinues : — " He would give one in private, as 
also he and Baskerville did in a meeting con- 
vened for the purpose, the stirring account ot 
God's dealings with the Uganda Mission ; which, 
in leading the Missionaries and Teachers to just 
views of the absolute necessity for personal con- 


secration and the direct and supreme work of the 
Spirit of God, so happily brought about the 
vivification of the Church in Uganda. He had 
conceived a great respect — and surely he was a 
judge, as capable as he was conscientious — of the 
abilities and graces of the Uganda converts, and 
especially of those who had become teachers, and 
he would relate anecdotes in support of his opinion, 
some of which I took notes of as he told them. 
A preacher at Mengo said in his sermon, that to 
form a judgment of a man's deserts, mart's way is to 
put his evil deeds into one scale, and his virtues and 
religious observances into the other ; whereas God's 
way, in such a case, would be to put both these into 
the debit scale. Another similar pulpit utterance, 
was a determination the preacher made between the 
spheres of faith and works, or rather of inward 
holiness and heart religion on the one hand, and 
outward observances on the other. Said the 
preacher : ' Religion may be compared to a banana.* 
The real heart religion is the juicy pulp, the forms 
and ceremonies are the skin. While the two are 
undivided, the banana keeps good till it is used, and 
so it is with religion. Separate the forms from the 
spirit, and the one will be of no more value than 
the banana husk, while the latter will speedily 
decay and corrupt apart from the outward ex- 
pression.' Observances, the preacher pointed out, 
had their value in protecting the holy germ within, 
and fostering the feelings of the heart. This was 
called forth by the arising of a certain spirit of in- 
subordination to the ordinances of the Church, and 

* The banana is the national food of the peojTle of Uganda, 


had its effect. What European teacher, Pilkington 
asked, could have used such a simile ? He was 
always insisting on the necessity to true progress 
of the African for Africa. Another wise saw was : 
, No poisoner gives poison neat, if he would remain 
undiscovered. The devil knows that.' Again : 
' The devil has two devices ; he will do one of two 
things — first he will try and deprive you of the food ; 
and if he cannot deprive you of it, he will corrupt 
it.' These were spoken by the native preacher in 
reference to the Romish teaching, which was then, 
and is now, combating the work of our Missionaries 
so keenly and so persistently. One man (I think 
Samwili), in a praj^er for the blessing of God on the 
Evangelists, used an expression which had greatly 
struck our friend : * We have the line, Thou hast 
the hook ! ' When the Mohammedans of Mombasa 
had heard him proclaim the conversion of three 
known Mohammedans in Uganda, w^hich I asked 
him to attest at our open-air meetings in Mombasa, 
— for the reason that the Mohammedans at the 
coast had said that the conversion of a Moslem was 
a simple impossibility, — they characteristically ex- 
plained it away by saying, * Oh, the Waganda were 
written down to the English from eternity ! ' — 
by the English meaning ' Christians.'" 

On reaching England, at the end of October, 
1895, Pilkington stayed for a few days with Mr. 
Bushell, at Harrow, before visiting his Irish home. 

He made his first appearance at the Annual 
Meeting of the Gleaner's Union, on November ist, 
and he created a great impression as he told of 


the change which had come over the lives of many 
of the Uganda converts, not to speak of the 
Missionaries, as the result of the great revival at 
the out-pouring of God's Spirit. At the same 
meeting he made an earnest appeal for men to 
devote themselves to literary work in the Mission 

But he had not returned home in order to go from 
place to place, seeking to rouse the home Church to 
her responsibilities to the unevangelised world, as in 
the case of most Missionaries. His mission was a 
very definite one— to see through the Press the revised 
Luganda New Testament, to complete the trans- 
lation of the Old Testament, and thus to furnish 
for the Uganda Church, on his return, a completed 
Bible in one volume. But, if he did not often 
appear on the public platform, when he did speak 
an impression was made in many cases which will 
never be effaced. In no case was this more remark- 
able than in his visits to the Universities of Oxford 
and Cambridge. At Oxford he spoke at Canon 
Christopher's Annual C. M.S. breakfast— that remark- 
able annual gathering, when so many distinguished 
graduates of the University, as well as under- 
graduates, gather year by year to meet some 
Missionary from abroad. On this occasion the 
gathering was a particularly representative one. 
Pilkington's review of the history of the Uganda 
Church was unusually comprehensive, and his 
illustrations most interesting, and, in conclusion, 
he made the follovving stirring appeal to Oxford 
men : — 


"Surely there must be many," he said, "who 
longed for opportunity to show their devotion to 
Christ in some more adequate way. There were 
thousands and thousands of miles in the Soudan 
waiting for self-sacrifice, and let them not suppose 
the Soudan would be won for Christ without 
sacrifice. Surely it would come from somewhere, 
and why not from Oxford ? They could not choose 
for themselves the sacrifice — that would be no real 
sacrifice — but when God called them, when God 
opened the way, when God gave them the privilege, 
surely they would not shrink from it. Might he 
end by giving them a message from a Mohammedan 
in Uganda ? He was speaking to him about the 
riches of Christ, and he replied, ' Do you think we 
should ever leave this religion of ours which has 
cost us so much suffering ? ' He loved his religion 
because it cost him so much, and he believed it was 
true that most things w^ere worth to them what they 
had cost them. If God gave them the opportunity, 
and opened the way and called them to it, he 
begged of them not to shrink. He believed they 
could do a work in Uganda, such as could be done 
in no other part of the world, because in no other 
part of the world was there material lying waiting 
as in Uganda. Here was the opportunity. He 
challenged them to accept it." 

Among the senior members of the University 
present at that gathering was Sir Henry Acland, 
late Regius Professor of Medicine, and he rose to 
express the thanks of the audience to Mr. Pilkington, 
and, in the course of his speech, he said ; — 


" They saw before them a man of strength, a man 
of heart, a man of education, who went forth amon^^ 
the milhons of their fellow creatures to teach every- 
thing that mankind required to know for their 
progress, their well-being, their happiness here and 
hereafter. What more was to be said ? They were 
aware that the study of physical science had, within 
the last half-century, become an essential part of 
the curriculum of the University of Oxford. He 
wondered w^hether the time would not shortly come 
when their able, thoughtful, excellent undergraduates, 
who studied in that department of human know- 
ledge, would qualify themselves especially to go as 
highly accomplished, medical advisers to assist 
Missionary work throughout the world — (hear, hear). 
He spoke from knowledge of some of their young 
scientific men that he believed, if that idea was put 
into their minds, they would be proud and anxious, 
on behalf of God's work, on behalf of their Queen, 
to go and faithfully join under the instructions and 
guidance of such a man of vigour and goodness 
and sympathy for his fellow creatures as they had 
heard address them that morning — (applause). He 
would only presume to add one word. Was it not 
a blessed thing to hear so much that was so deeply, 
scientifically, and intellectually interesting as was 
Mr. Pilkington's account of the people of Uganda, 
without one single word of politics or of the quarrels 
and disputes of party men all over the world ? They 
had set before them the high object of elevating 
these poor people, so that they might be e\en 
teachers in England," 


But, perhaps, even more interesting than this 
meeting at Oxford, was the breakfast held in the 
hall of his own College, Pembroke College, Cam- 
bridge, at the invitation of the Master. It was an 
unique occasion, and Dr. Searle's account of this 
gathering, given in the course of a chapel sermon 
after Pilkington's death, is a valuable record of that 
day. He says : — 

*' His appearance in our hall about two years ago 
made a great impression. The majority at the 
breakfast in hall at that time had never met him, or 
heard him speak. One was the present Bishop of 
Rochester, Dr. Talbot, who kindly wrote to me to 
condole with me on the loss of my friend, and 
adds : ' I see him standing at your high table that 
morning, and his manners and words made a great 
impression on me, as strong as any that I have 
received for some years.' I can recollect how 
intently the Bishop followed him, and took notes of 
his address. 

Others were greatly impressed. The Master of 
Trinity referred to his choice language and exquisite 
delivery, and remarked, though ignorant of his 
classical distinction, ' it is like the address of a 

All this can be remembered, and serves to show 
how precious all natural gifts can become when 
consecrated to God. His fine person, his rich voice, 
his linguistic ability, his classical knowledge, all told. 
But there was something more; he kept back 
nothing of the Gospel, and as he spoke of the 
deepest things with a holy reverence, I know our 


hearts burnt within us, and we felt that we had a 
prophet amongst us, a man young, indeed, in years, 
and though not a doctor of theology, who could, 
notwithstanding, lead us to a high wisdom and 
instruct us in the way of God more perfectly. 

So do teachers learn from their pupils, and must 
not disdain to confess it." 

Previous to these meetings, Pilkington was present 
at the historic Conference of the Student Volunteer 
Missionary Union, at Liverpool, in i8g6. Here there 
were 717 student delegates from the Colleges of the 
world, yy being foreign delegates including repre- 
sentatives of ig foreign countries, and at this 
conference the motto * The Evangelisation of the 
world in this generation,' was deliberately chosen 
as the watchword of the S.V.M.U. 

We have seen something of the work of Christian 
men at Cambridge during the time that Pilkington 
was an undergraduate, and at the same time a 
similar work was being carried on at Oxford, though 
amid greater difficulties, and even then there had 
been organised year by year for a considerable time, 
an annual Conference of members of the Oxford and 
Cambridge Christian Unions for their mutual help 
and encouragement. 

Meantime, owing to the visit of the "Cambridge 
Seven," already mentioned, under the leadership of 
C. T. Studd and Stanley Smith, a revival was 
taking place in Edinburgh University, fanned to a 
flame by the work of Professor Henry Drummond 
and by other Christian Professors. 

It was some years later, however, that the idea 


borrowed from the Student Volunteer Missionary 
Union of America, laid hold on British students and 
resulted in the formation of the Student Volunteer 
Missionary Union, which, with its sister organisa- 
tion, the British College Christian Union, has 
drawn together students from all the chief 
Universities and Colleges of Great Britain and 
Ireland, and through the World's Students' 
Christian Federation, is uniting in one great bond 
of brotherly Christian sympathy, the National 
Students' Christian organisations of Europe, Asia, 
Africa, America, Australia and Japan. 

The Liverpool Conference was the first outward 
demonstration to the churches of this country of the 
wide-reaching importance of this movement, though 
even that was only an imperfect forecast of the 
development which has taken place since that time. 
This was the first time that Pilkington had been 
brought face to face with the work of the Student 
\'olunteer Missionary- Union, and this Conference 
was an inspiration to him, whilst his presence was 
an inspiration to the Conference. 

The evangelisation of the world in this generation 
was a possibility which he had already contemplated, 
and he threw his heart and soul into the working out 
of this great ideal, contending that if only the natives 
of Uganda were used as they might be, Africa at 
least might speedily be evangelised. 

No one, however, must suppose that Pilkington 
was a mere theorist ; he did not encourage others to 
high aims and expectations without giving them 
the most practical suggestions as to the methods of 

ox FURLOUGH. 255 

work to be adopted, and the qualifications needed 
for it. 

His remarks on this subject at the Liverpool 
Conference were of so great value that we may repro- 
duce the main part of his address. 

He said : — 

" I wish to speak to you first of all about the 
methods of directly evangelistic work, and secondly, 
about the main qualifications needful for it. 

I. Methods: — It is most needful to seek to 
understand the ignorance of those with whom you 
have to deal. If you speak to an African of God, he 
does not know what you mean, and your words 
convey no meaning to him. If you would win him, 
you must give him the testimony of a Christian life. 
These people must see that the Gospel will meet 
their needs ; they must be made to realize that it is 
a power in your life, and can be in theirs. They 
must know by your life that your profession is a true 
one. See that your words of preaching come 
naturally and freely. Never speak to a soul to salve 
your own conscience, but only when impelled by the 
Holy Ghost. 

To gain the heathen we must live with them. 
Get close to the hearts you would ivin for Christ. Let 
your heart be entwined with their hearts ; let no 
barrier of big houses, or clothes, or custom come 
between you and the souls you would reach. See 
that you suffer no barriers of national prejudice to 
mar your work, nor any pride or daintiness. God 
can take all these things away from us. Let us 
become all things to all men ; become, not pretend 


to be. We need not necessarily dress like the 
natives, nor make any external change. It is our 
hearts that must be one with the hearts of those 
we seek. We must love and sympathise with them, 
ever remembering that each soul may be made like 
the Son of God. 

Two practical hints as to method. In Uganda, 
we have found after-meetings of great service and 
very successful. It is just the outcome of the 
principle, that there is no salvation save by the 
dealing of the soul with God. We point the people 
to God, and say, ' We cannot save you ; God can 
and will.' 

The power to read the Bible is the key to the 
Kingdom of God. With the exception of one case, 
I have never known anyone profess Christ who 
could not read. 

2. Qualifications. There are four things essential 
for the work of evangelisation. 

1. Physical qualifications. 

2. A knowledge of the language. 

3. Love and Sympathy. 

4. The Power of the Holy Ghost. 

The first two are, of course, possessed by natives 
in far greater measure than by ourselves ; the third 
we share with them ; the fourth is free to all. 

If this be so, then the natives are more qualified 
to evangelise than we are. The evangelisation of 
Africa must be carried out by Africans, and it will be 
accomplished when we have a hundred native 
evangelists to every European missionary. 

Physical Qualifications. I was speaking once to a 


man of the world, and he said he beheved that 
success or failure depended on this, that some men 
do, and some do not, realize the importance of 
physical care in the matter of food and sleep. The 
best training for a missionary is to be able to live on 
the simplest food, and never to indulge in sleep. It 
is a most important thing that a man should have 
perfect control over these things. It was in the 
matter of food that the Israelites were first tempted, 
and in the matter of sleep that the disciples failed 
in th2 hour of their Lord's need. 

Knowledge of the Language. Learn the native 
language till you can read the hearts of the people 
and get to understand their thoughts. Do not be 
content to speak as a European, but aim at 
perfection, for on this may depend immortal souls. 
Do not let English come between you and the 
people. Do not study the language before you go 
out, but study the sounds of spoken language — that 
is, phonetics. Study not only the Bible and the 
hearts of men, but also their throats. Now is the 
time to do it. Get Sweet's Primer of Phonetics, 
which will teach you to combine sounds and get 
control of your vocal organs. When at length you 
are learning the language, seek to associate sounds 
with objects. Let each object bring some native 
sound ringing in your ears, so that the sound brings 
the object before your eyes. 

Love and Sympathy. Now and here is the time 
and place for preparation in these essentials. Take 
every opportunity of exercising love and sympathy 
towards all whom you meet, 


The Pouer of the Holy Ghost. I would urge every 
man to accept the power of the Holy Ghost to 
change his life now. It is only by the fulness of the 
Holy Spirit in our own hearts that we can really 
get at the hearts of the people. Let us each one 
maintain by any means, and by all means, and at all 
times, the fulness of the Holy Ghost in our lives." 

Considering the success which Pilkington attained 
not only in his Bible translation, but in his knoW' 
ledge of the colloquial, his hints on the methods of 
acquiring a foreign tongue may well be laid to heart 
by those who would follow in his steps. 

He frequently stated that, in his opinion, it was 
not so much an essential to be possessed of rare 
abilities, as it was to follow definite methods of study, 
such as those mentioned in his Liverpool address. 

In a letter to his sister at the time she was 
working as a Missionary in India, he writes : 

"... I think you will find that the real and 
most stringent test of knowledge of a language is, 
whether you can understand the natives speaking 
among one another. 

I believe we must learn like children, through 
the ear, not by books much ; rather the office of 
books is to enable us to make up and understand 
when we hear spoken words and sentences, which 
only constant hearing (whether by repetition to our- 
selves aloud, or by hearing others say them) will 
teach us to know in that instinctive way which is 
necessary to real speaking or understanding. To 
know thoroughly by book is an utterly different 
thing from knowing by ear." 


But it is not all vvlio are ready to adopt the 
methods which he adopted. He never cared what 
anyone thought of him, and did not mind how 
ludicrous he seemed to others, as he copied even the 
grimaces of the natives, if only he could achieve his 
object of speaking like a native. Nor was he dis- 
appointed, for we are told that the natives spoke of 
him as "a true Muganda." 

But he was not satisfied with a mere knowledge 
of the sounds of the language, and the ability to 
produce them. If he was to be understood, he felt 
that he must master the native idiom, and be able 
to use their similes instead of European ones, which 
would be utterly unintelligible to the African mind. 

It is strange how often this is forgotten by those 
who go to work in foreign c ountries, and it is largely 
owing to this, that so much of the knowledge gained, 
even in mission schools, is superficial, because the 
books used in teachmg have been based, not on the 
customs or even the objects seen in the country, but 
upon things which the children have had no oppor- 
tunity of understanding, owing to the land in which 
they live. 

Pilkington therefore devoted himself to the study 
of the proverbs and similes of Luganda, and he 
describes his plan in a letter to his mother from 
Uganda, dated April 5th, 1895. 

'* I am learning every day, and am d^ilv realizing 
my ignorance more. It is a beautiful language, and 
most rich and expressive, but with very little in 
common with English ; it is necessary to know their 
similes and metaphors as well as the mere words ; 


what European would talk of having ears as ' sharp 
as an elephant's,' or being as thin (not as a poker), 
but ' as a blade of grass ' ; or of being afraid (not of 
your shadow), but 'of the breaking of a blade of 
grass,' etc., etc. These are the things that make 
one intelligible and interesting to these people, but 
to get to use them naturally, without effort, is 
extremely difficult. Then their proverbs ! Half of 
our English ideas are only translatable by means of 
proverbs into Luganda — e.g., the words ' impartial 
or partial,' ' interested or disinterested,' would have 
to be turned by using the proverb, ' In matters that 
concern the forest, is the monkey judge ? ' or to 
translate the expression, ' he's only got himself to 
thank, your own fault, etc.,' you must use a proverb 
about sores, that come from self-inflicted cuttings 
in the flesh for ornamentation ; and nothing else 
would be really intelligible to these people in that 
context, except that particular proverb. So we are 
still a long way from being masters of this lan- 

Such was the great burden of his conversation 
when he met with those who, like himself, felt the 
paramount claims of the unevangelised world, and 
who desired to gain from him some hints as to the 
great secret of his success during only one term of 
service on the mission field. 

At the same time, his earnest devotion to this 
great work of his life did not in any way act as a 
depressant upon his naturally buoyant spirits, and 
he was just as ready as ever to enter into the 
interests of those around him, and to have a game 


with some boys, who always seemed to be to him 
the most congenial of companions. 

Mr. Hyslop writes of his impression of him at this 
period : 

" In personal appearance he was, I thought, 
unchanged. But in the place of the young University 
man there was, I might almost say, the mature 
veteran missionary, whose heart seemed to be 
' bound in the bundle of life ' with his beloved 
Baganda, and whose mind was intent on giving 
them the Bible in their own tongue. Anything 
' Ugandese ' (if I may venture to coin a barbaric 
word) attracted and interested him, and I can 
remember how inexhaustible was his patience in 
answering all importunate questions on his favourite 
subject. He was equally at home whether he 
discussed the phonetics of the native languages, or 
detailed the varieties of plantains to be found in 
Central Africa ; whether he enumerated the vagaries 
of King M'Wanga, or described the customs of his 

At the Keswick Convention, in July, 1896, his 
testimony to the work of the Holy Spirit in his own 
life and in the Uganda Church was a stimulus to 
many, especially to the young men who were there 
in large numbers. 

One special meeting, at which he took part, was 
held, during the time of the Convention, of workers 
on behalf of Africa. It was felt to be most desirable 
that African Missionaries should have greater oppor- 
tunities of benefiting by one another's experiences, 
and at this meeting it was suggested that some paper 


might be started which would embrace all African 
Missions, and form a means of knowing how far the 
work of evangelization was being carried on in 
different parts of the continent, and by what 
agencies. The idea of having an African Year Book 
of missions was also mooted, and the need of a text- 
book for students of African Mission -work was 
mentioned. This latter has since been drawn up by 
Mr. Douglas Thornton,* who was one of the 
conveners of this meeting. 

From Keswick, Pilkington went for a few days to 
one of the Universities' Camps for Public School- 
boys, at Bexhill, where he was in his element. He 
had his bicycle with him, and had some splendid 
rides with parties of boys, but even during his time 
under canvas he was revising the Uganda Bible, and 
he would press boys into the service by getting them 
to read out to him from the English revised version, 
whilst he had the Luganda before him. 

Afterwards, he took one of the elder fellows, whom 
he had met at the camp, to have a bicycle tour with 
him in Ireland near his home. 

This was good preparation for his great ride, 
especially as he had one or two minor accidents, 
which tested, to some extent, his powers of endurance. 
He is said, for instance, to have ridden for the 
greater part of one day, with only one pedal, having 
damaged the other. We have dwelt at considerable 
length on some of the occasions when Pilkington 
had the opportunity of taking part in public meetings 

• '' Africa Waiting,'by Douglas M.Thornton. Published by the 
Student Volunteer Missionary Union, 32 Warwick Lane, E.G. 


and conferences during his furlough ; it must be left 
to another chapter to speak at greater length of 
that which was his first work, Bible translation. 



" God's revelation on the one side, its breadth, its 
depth, its height ! On the other, a heathen nation, 
heathen ideas, a heathen language ! How can the 
gulf between them be bridged ? 

First, we must understand that a translation of 
the Bible can, in the nature of things, be adequate 
only in so far as the ideas therein contained have 
been transferred to the native mind. 

Love, joy, peace, forgiveness, God, worship — 
such ideas as these cannot be adequately represented 
in any heathen language at first ; because they are 
conceptions unknown to heathendom. The words 
which are used to translate them will gradually 
assume a new, and deeper, and purer meaning ; but 
only in so far as the native mind grasps these new 
conceptions. Therefore teaching must go hand in 
hand with translating. This was markedly the 
case in Uganda. 

The Swahili language was first used as a 
temporary bridge, so to say, on which to stand to 
build the permanent one, a translation in Luganda. 
This Swahili version we owed to the work of Krapf 
and Rebmann, and Bishop Steere and others. 



For a long time the Swahili New Testament was 
the text-book of Uganda ; day after day the most 
intelligent of the Christians translated from it into 
their own language ; day after day they discussed 
among themselves the proper rendering of terms, 
appealing to the European as to the exact force of 
the original ; for years they were thus occupied in 
hammering out a version on a native anvil. 

Then a tentative translation of St. Matthew's 
Gospel was made by Mackay and Ashe ; this was 
printed in the country, eagerly read, and criticised, 
and revised ; reprinted, again revised, and again 
printed; and so on, until a version was produced 
which was faithful to the original and idiomatic, a 
splendid piece of work, and a grand basis for future 

So wrote Pilkington in "The Gospel in Uganda" 
of the first steps of Bible translation in that country. 

The difficulties of first committing to writing an 
unwritten language is naturally a task of very great 
difficulty, and this had been chiefly carried out by 
Mackay, who in the first place had printed reading- 
sheets from wooden type cut with his own hand. 

Assisted chiefly by Ashe in the way just referred 
to, some progj ess had been made in the translation 
of the Gospels ; this work was taken up by the 
Rev. E. C. Gordon on the death of Mackay, and at 
the time Pilkington had arrived in Uganda, he had 
translated the gospel of St. Mark and commenced 
St. Luke, having as his helpers Henry Wright Duta 
and Sembt^ra Mackay. He also completed the 
translation of St. John's Gospel which had been left 


unfinished by Mackay. Pilkington then took up the 
work of translation, and, with Henry Wright Duta 
as his chief assistant, he translated the rest of the 
New Testament, and later on revised the whole, 
carrying it through the press when in England. 

He had translated, also, a considerable part of the 
Old Testament while in Uganda; the minor prophets 
being contributed by the Rev. W. A. Crabtree, and 
the remainder, Pilkington carried out in Ireland 
with the help of notes made in Uganda, in association 
with Henry Wright Duta. 

How he actually did his work, whilst on furlough 
in his Irish home, is told us by his sister. Miss 
Pilkington, who writes of this as follows : — 

" George reached Tore for his furlough in Novem- 
ber, i8gfS. He had set before himself the translation 
of the Bible during that time. With this in view, 
before leaving Uganda, he went over the untranslated 
books with Henry Wright Duta, taking copious 

He had not been at home many days before he 
began to work systematically. He first calculated 
how much translation he ought to do daily, in order 
to finish the whole, leaving a margin of time, and 
then set himself a task for each day. 

He had no type-writer at first, nor could he 
discover any way in which he could be helped. His 
progress was thus very slow, and each day he fell 
very far short of his appointed task. Soon, however, 
he found that it would save him much time to have 
the portion to be translated read aloud. I read 
from the revised version, with the authorized open 


beside me for reference, and also a French Bible, in 
which he found delicacies of expression which do 
not appear in the English. The writing was very 
fatiguing to him — it was with great joy that he 
received a present of a type-writer. At first, he 
could not accomplish as much with it as with pen 
and ink, but soon he learnt to write so fast that the 
amount of work got through in the day was almost 
doubled, and with much less fatigue. We now 
secured the services of a lad in the neighbourhood, 
who shared the reading aloud with me. 

The type-writer was placed on an erection at 
which he could stand, without being compelled to 
stoop as in writing ; he could now work for hours 
without being over-tired, and thus standing sur- 
rounded by commentaries, Greek Testament, and the 
parts of the Bible already finished, and his notes, he 
translated and wrote as I read. As a rule, he was 
able to write off quite rapidly ; sometimes there were 
long delays while a word was hunted up to ascertain 
how it had been translated in a former passage, or 
an obscure portion looked out in the commentaries. 
As well as I remember, 'Proverbs' was the book 
he translated with the greatest ease and rapidity, 
that book seemed specially to be adapted to the 
Luganda mode of expression and way of thought, 
while the long lists of proper names in i Chronicles, 
each of which had to be spelled, were by far the 
most tedious parts. 

He generally worked on w ithout much pause for 
conversation, but now and again some verse 
suggested a thought, and a talk or discussion ensued, 


or some idiom or beauty in the languas^e was too 
interesting to be passed over in silence ; then would 
follow a comparison between Luganda and Hindu- 
stani, with probably a digression on the characteristics 
of the Waganda and the natives of India, and the 
best methods of reaching these different peoples. But, 
as a rule, we worked hard without interruption ; I 
used often to be reminded of our more youthful days 
when play was more absorbing than work, but his 
keenness was just the same, and in a game of lawn 
tennis, whether as partner or opponent, he never 
would allow one to grow slack for a moment — as boy 
or man. Not only was he himself whole-hearted 
in whatever he undertook, but he inspired others to 
be so ; it seemed as if half-heartedness could not 
exist in his presence. 

He worked generally for six or eight hours a 
day, and for three weeks, when we had the house 
almost to ourselves, the rest of the family being 
away, he reached an average of ten hours a day. 
At this time especially his bicycle was a great help, 
for half-an-hour's run on it refreshed him so 
completely that he could start with new energy. 

He always worked with the window of his room 
wide open, he being stationed near it, his brain 
refused to act without an abundance of fresh air ! 

When a book was translated it had, of course, to 
be carefully revised, then sent to the Printer, the 
proofs received back, revised, and again sent to the 
Printer, then once more carefully looked over before 
the final printing took place. 

-He was sometimes away for a few weeks at a 


time addressing meetings, but in order that he 
might have time for the translation he was not called 
upon to do much deputation work. He spoke at a 
good many meetings in our own neighbourhood. 

When not at work he was generally talking over 
plans for the extension of Christ's Kingdom all over 
the world, especially in Uganda and its neighbouring 
countries, but Arabia, the Soudan, and all the 
Mohammedan world lay very near his heart ; the 
great problem of how to bring the Gospel Message 
home to the hearts of the Mohammedans was a 
most frequent topic of conversation. 

He liked to talk over anything that he was about 
to write, such as articles for Magazines, and ' The 
Gospel in Uganda,' which Mr. Baskerville and he 
wrote while at home. 

During the last months of his furlough, his 
thoughts were much occupied by the three years 
enterprise for Uganda, he was constantly making 
plans and calculations as to how the European 
Missionaries might move on to new ground, leaving 
the work already established to natives. The 
evangelisation of the whole world was always before 


He was one of those w^ho longed to impart a 
new idea to others, and sometimes at a very early 
hour in the morning, unable to wait any longer, he 
would seek me out full of eagerness to tell of some 
new plan that had struck him, or calculation he had 
made as to how many heathen could be reached in 
a given time ; he loved to work out his ideas in a 
mathematical form, and tn illustrate them with 


diagrams, or sometimes it was to put forward some 
fresh argument in a discussion which had been cut 
short the night before. 

Notwithstanding the fact that so much of his time 
was devoted to work, his interest and share in the 
family Hfe was very keen. He entered into all our 
plans for amusement with boyish zest, and was 
always the life of the party, bringing fun and good 
humour wherever he went. 

He left us for Uganda in October, 1897, deeply 
happy in having accomplished the task he had set 
before him." 

Besides his translation of the Bible, Pilkington 
also revised the Prayer Book, and the Rev. 
T. W. Drury, Principal of the Church Mission- 
ary College, Islington, who came in contact 
with him in connection with this work, bears 
witness to the clear grasp of Christian doctrine 
which he possessed. This is all the more remark- 
able, seeing that Pilkington had not in the ordinary 
way been trained in Theology, yet no doubt the 
close study of God's word necessary for the 
translation had been in itself a Theological training. 

But in addition to translational work, Pilkington 
was the author of one important original pamphlet 
in Uganda, as well as a number of hymns. This 
pamphlet, under the title of " Anonya Alaba, He 
who seeketh findeth," dealt with the teaching of 
the Church of Rome. 

The title of the first chapter, *' Love," is 
suggestive of the spirit in which he entered into 
the discussion of controversial questions with those 


who differed from him, and it was this which gained 
for him the respect in which he was held by all 

The basis of his argument was, as he said, " the 
book of the Apostles of our Lord." He referred to 
this as the source from which both parties professed 
to derive their teaching, at the same time illustrating 
his remarks by references to Church History. 

One chapter is headed with the extraordinary 
title " Mr. Eat and put back." In this he alluded 
to the way in which the Church of Rome had taken 
away much from the Word of God and inserted 
her own traditions in its place ; this he compared 
to the action of the white ants who eat out the 
inside of a log of wood and put earth in its place. 

By such similes as these he was able to gain the 
attention of ths paople, and what is more, to make 
his words intelligible to them. 



The story of the Uganda Church, whether we think 
of it as the wonderful cathedral on Namirembe Hill 
and all the work connected with it, or as the body 
of Christians gathered out from heathendom in the 
centre of dark Africa, was often told by Pilkington 
during his furlough. But he did more. He has 
furnished us with a vivid picture of the work in 
Uganda, in the shape of four scenes, which are 
published in pamphlet form,* but which we are 
enabled to reproduce here as we believe they form 
the best permanent record of these addresses. 
" A HUNDRED thousand souls brought into close 
contact with the Gospel — half of them able to read 
for themselves; two hundred buildings raided by 
native Christians in which to worship God and read 
His Word ; two hundred native evangelists and 
teachers entirely supported by the Native Church ; 
ten thousand copies of the New Testament in 
circulation ; six thousand souls eagerly seeking daily 
instruction ; statistics of baptism, of confirmation, 
of adherents, of teachers, more than doubling yearly 

* " The Gospel in Uganda." Church Missionary Society, 
Salisbury Square, EC. 



for the last six or seven years, ever since the return 
of the Christians from exile ; the power of God 
shown by changed lives ; and all this in the centre 
of the thickest spiritual darkness in the world ! 
Does it not make the heart reel with mingled 
emotions of joy and fear, of hope and apprehension? 

Well may Christian hearts rejoice with trembling 
as they hear of it ! Well may they ' labour in 
prayers ' for such possibilities, either of magnificent 
success or heartbreaking disaster ! " 

The following is an attempt to describe what the 
writer has seen of these things : 

Scene I. 
" We are in the great church in the capital on 
Namirembe Hill. It is a week-day, any week-day 
but Monday, about eight o'clock in the morning. 
As we glance down the aisles of poles, we see that 
the whole building is filled with groups of learners, 
sitting most of them on the floor, but the teachers 
and some others on chairs or stools ; some dressed 
in robes of snow-white calico, others in bark-cloth 
knotted over the right shoulder. What is this large 
group, fifty or sixty in number ? This is a class for 
St. Mathew's Gospel, and this teacher with refined 
and intellectual face is Thomas Semfuma, and he is 
teaching St. Matthew's Gospel. There are two or 
three other classes for this one Gospel, which, as it 
was the first translated, is still the most popular. 
And who is that keen and energetic little man who 
is organizing those elementary classes for reading 
near the end of the church ? That is Wambu^i, 


God-gifted for that, to us, tedious and trying work. 
No hound keener after game than he after every 
soul that can ft-om Heathen be transformed into a 
seeker after God ; none more unwearied than he 
in hammering into dull heads the letters and 
syllables which are to be the means of letting in 
the Gospel light. Come out for a moment from the 
church, and from the high vantage point of Nami- 
rembe's summit, look out at that cluster of bee-hive 
huts on that hillside opposite. That is an encamp- 
ment of Wasoga, come from their homes across the 
Nile to make noisy music with the blare of their 
horns and the monotonous twang of their harps for 
Mwanga's royal ears. If you go there this after- 
noon, you will be not unlikely to meet indefatigable 
Wambuzi as he passes from hut to hut, trying to 
coax these wild and untaught, but good-natured and 
easily-led Wasoga, into giving heed to the things of 
God. Many and many a Musoga has gone home 
with the first beginnings of Divine knowledge 
instilled into his mind by Wambuzi's persevering 
efforts. May God give many like him ! 

There are many other classes, forty or so in all, 
with an average of thirty or forty in each class. 
Each of the four Gospels is represented by more 
than one class ; and some of the European Mission- 
aries are teaching the Epistles, while one organizes 
and supervises the whole. 

But what is that sound that recalls us to the 
church and its congregation, nearly forgotten as we 
gazed across the hills into far-off Kikabya and 
Bulemezi, and thought of the millions lying behind 


those hills to north, and . east, and west, .and 

wondered when, oh, when ! 

But the loud, rhythmical beat of the great drum 
calling us to prayers, heard for some four or five 
miles round, disturbs our reverie, and we return to 
the church as the classes break up and gather in the 
front while one of the native readers or deacons 
gives out a hymn ; then the Apostles' Creed is 
recited as by men who believe it : then prayers, 
some from the Prayer-book, some extempore. And 
then the assembly breaks up, and we watch them 
dispersing, the bright sun gleaming on the snowy 
robes of the chiefs, and less dazzlingly on the 
humble bark-cloth of the poorer folk, as down the 
hill they go to pursue their various avocations — 
chiefs to decide disputes or pay their respects to 
the king ; women to cultivate and cook ; boys to 
dance attendance on their lords or run messages ; 
some to the market, some out to their farms in the 

Scene II. 

" It is three o'clock one Friday afternoon, and again 
we climb the hill and enter the great church ; it 
is not full, but perhaps a thousand or more are 
gathered on this first Friday in the month to hear 
what God has been doing throughout Uganda and in 
some neighbouring countries, and to bid prayerful 
farewell tc those who are being sent out with the 
Go>pel me sage to needy places, and to bring 
offerings to God for the support of this work. 

Who is that youn^ fellow who is pleading with 


tears for more labourers for that dark spot where he 
has been working against great odds for some 
months ? That is Nathaniel. As he speaks of the 
need and the encouragemi nts he has met with, and 
the difficulties, we are encouraged and depressed by 

And who is this who is telHng of a great work in 
Koki, far away to the south-west ? Defiant opposi- 
tion, slander, misunderstandings, and then prayer 
answered ; charms brought to be broken or burnt ; 
a weekly congregation of two or three hundred souls, 
besides others in the country ; books bought in con- 
siderable quantities, and sixty able to read a Gospel 
where not one could read before. This is lame 
Michael, who, in spite of his lameness, result of a 
bullet in the Mohammedan wars, undertook the 
journey to Koki, one hundred and thirty miles away, 
and with the help of half a dozen other teachers, bore 
a bright Gospel testimony in that interesting country, 
befriended, it is true, by the King, Kamswaga, whose 
handsome and intelligent features and quiet dignity 
of manner have greatly impressed all Europeans who 
have known him. This young ruler decided a year 
ago to be instructed in the reformed Christian 
religion, in spite of the great pressure brought to 
bear on him from more than one influential quarter. 
He spent a few weeks in the capital, and at that 
time declared his intention of being a Protestant 
by attending services on Sunday in the big church ; 
after his return to Koki with Michael, and when he 
had by his instruction learnt more of the Protestant 
religion, he wrote a letter to the Church at Mengo 


declaring his fixed intention of persevering in the 
course he had entered on, in spite of opposition. The 
possibihties of service offered in Koki are unique. 

Or perhaps we have the privilege this afternoon of 
listening to the story of evangelisation in Toro, two 
hundred miles due west from Mengo, and therefore 
within only a trifling distance of Stanley's Great 
Forest and the dwarfs. Perhaps it is Noah Nakiwafu 
who is telling about the trials and encouragements 
there ; how Kasagama, the King of Toro, welcomed 
them, and how presents were sent and efforts made 
to induce him to profess a less pure form of Christain 
faith— in vain. How, imitatmg the example of the 
native evangelists, although they never spoke to 
him about it, he became a total abstainer, strange 
novelty for a great African chief; and how now (if 
we may project into past time what we now know 
to be the case) he has asked for baptism. How a 
church was built in some still more remote spot, and 
application made for teachers, and how none were 
forthcoming ; how the two churches in Toro were 
filled each Sunday with congregations of two or 
three hundred ; how the King of Unyoro, Kabarega, 
sent an army and broke up the work in the more 
northern of the two stations (where Japheth, long 
ago baptised, is chief), but only for a time ; and how 
the natives with their teachers were in hiding until 
the army retired ; and how afterwards Lwabudongo, 
Kabarega's prime minister, wishing for peace with 
the British, came to Kasagama and became his man, 
and is now. with many of his followers, desirous of 
Christian instruction. 


But we must pass on from Noah's most interesting 
story, and listen to the accounts from nearer home : 
from Kyagwe, where some sixty churches have in a 
year sprung up, under the fostering care of the 
central station at Ngogwe; from the Islands of Sese, 
where more than twenty churches on as many islands 
testify to the wish of the sailors and fishermen of 
Uganda to hear the Gospel, in spite of the foolish 
belief that no Christian or reader ever can be a 
successful fisherman ; as soon as the fish see a book 
in the angler's hands, either they will all die, or, at 
any rate, refuse to be caught. 

But at last the various speakers have finished, 
and a hymn of praise has been sung, and prayers 
have been offered for further blessing on the work. 
And now a list of names is being read, and as each 
name is called out, we see a young man rise from 
his seat, till some eight or ten are standing up ; 
these are evangelists who are being sent out to some 
of the country churches. And now an address is 
being given, urging, probably, on these young 
messengers of Christ, their duties and responsibilities, 
and on the Native Church their part in the work, 
their duty of prayer, and the pri\ ilege of giving in 
support of their evangelists, for all the native 
teachers are supported by the natives: 'It is more 
blessed to give than to receive, and we Europeans 
cannot rob you of your blessing by supporting your 
teachers,' so we have often told thern. And so, 
when the address is over, we shall see them coming 
forward with their offerings to God— shells, which 
they deposit in a large native basket placed in "the 


centre of the aisle ; calico, bark cloth — the beauti- 
fully prepared bark of a kind of hg tree, torn off in 
strips, scraped, beaten with grooved mallets, and 
sewn together with plantain fibre ; mats ; fowls ; 
goats ; cows sometimes, and even ivory ; and then 
comes a long stream of women and girls, each 
carrying a bunch of plantains or a bundle of sweet 
potatoes on her head, till the pile of offerings grows 
to an alarming size, though its money value is not 
great ; and then a prayer of dedication is oftered, 
and we ask the Lord to accept and make use of 
these gifts which He has allowed us to give Him ; 
and then the benediction, and the service is ended. 

These monthly Missionary Meetings are now 
b^ing established in other centres too. 

Do these evangelists do good work ? 

A Missionary visited a small island in the Lake 
two years ago, and found one person only there who 
could read at all. Two teachers were sent, and 
after nine months sixty were able to read a Gospel. 
Two teachers were sent to another island : in a 
year one church, or rather hovel, capable of con- 
taining a hundred by crushing, had become four 
churches, one of them holding seven hundred souls, 
and the congregation of a hundred had become a 
thousand, and some fifty or more had been baptized, 
and many more were catechumens ; its name is 
Busi. You can see it on the map. 

The teacher whom God chiefly used to produce 
these wonderful results is a man of spiritual power ; 
on fire with love to God and man. ' Oh, Lord, we 
have only the bare line, Thou hast the hook,' so he 


prayed one day as he asked that souls might that 
day be saved. And God has proved that hook 
sharp and barbed to His servant who has counted 
upon Him. 

The v^ork done and being done by these teachers 
has opened our eyes to marvellous possibilities for 
Africa and the World. ' The World to be 
evangelised in this generation ' — can it be done ? 

Kyagwe, a province fifty miles square, has had 
the Gospel preached, by lip and life, through almost 
every village in the space of one short year, by some 
seventy native evangelists, under the supervision of 
only two Europeans : more than two thousand 
square miles and only two Europeans ! The 
teacher, on Busi above mentioned, has by this time 
probably accomplished his purpose of visiting every 
house in that island with the message of Salvation 
on his lips. Soon we may hope that there will be 
no house left in Uganda that has not had God's 
message brought thus to its very threshold. What 
is to prevent the extension of this system two 
hundred miles" in every direction round Mengo — 
this is the distance of our furthest outpost, Toro — 
in the course of a few years, three or four ? Only 
the lack of the comparatively few European trainers 
and organizers needed for so magnificent an 
expansion ! Will they not be forthcoming ? ' Let 
us go up at once and possess it ; for we are well 
able to overcome it.' " 

Scene HI. 
''And now let me transport you to the wooded 


island of Kome ; for, standing on its centre ridge, 
we can gaze across the Lake to east, and west, and 
north — a very lovely sight. There is Ntebe twenty 
miles away on the mainland, the Government 
Station, the port of Mengo ; we have there a church, 
in fact, three churches and four teachers, with a 
promising work. On that bare island of Nsazi, 
separated by only a narrow piece of water from that 
on which we stand, and contrasting strangely its 
treeless hillsides with Rome's rich forests, there is a 
small church. It is only some two years since a 
missionary, visiting Nsazi, found there only one soul 
who could read at all. Two teachers were sent 
there. After nine months' work there were sixty 
who could read pretty well. 

Then over to the east lies Lwaji, first of the 
Buvuma Islands, though politically part of Uganda ; 
here is a church and a keen desire to learn. And 
far away behmd Lwaji, we see the large Buvuma 
Island, dark-wooded ridge bounding the furthest 
horizon ; and about it lie its smaller sisters of the 
Buvuma group, all still unoccupied by the Gospel, 
except uttermost Bugaya, the one bright spot in 
great darkness. On this outlying island a good 
work seems to be going on ; the two chiefs of it seem 
favourably disposed, and several have learnt to read ; 
a church has been built. The three Muganda 
teachers sent there showed much real Christian zeal 
and self-denial, resolutely putting up with food to 
which they were not accustomed (and little enough 
of that), a kind of canary seed made into porridge, 
husks and all ; eaten with milk, or with a kind 


of sour fruit ; it is poor stuff after plantains. 

A boy from this island of Kome, a slave by old 
native law, followed one of the missionaries to the 
capital, and finding that he could claim his freedom, 
he did so, and was declared free by the Katikiro. A 
bright idea struck him ; he would go and release 
from domestic slavery a sister, whose master owned 
her by the same right by which he had owned him, 
the brother. So off he went — to return crestfallen ; 
he had met only ridicule and contempt. ' What, 
she, a member of a decent family, take a freedom 
which wasn't hers! Was ever the like heard!' 
Like the Irish-woman, who replied to the kind- 
hearted stranger who, summoned by her screams, 
rebuked her husband for so cruelly beating his wife, 
*And who's got a better right?' A willing slave is 
a slave indeed. 

Turning our eyes a little to the south, we see 
Bukasa, now a C.M.S. Station, and the centre of the 
work in the Sese Islands. Yes, let our eyes rest a 
while on its long ridge ; it is a bright spot ; had you 
once seen its tall and hideous (with sm_all-pox marks) 
but delightful master, you would not soon forgot 
him. He it was who sent back, unbidden by any 
voice but that of God and the native teacher, the 
slaves captured on Buvuma Island, in the war that 
took place there some four years ago. Those who 
saw him shoving his way through crowds of book- 
buyers in the old days on Namirembe, and returning 
to the fray again and again to purchase reading 
sheets for his islanders, when dearth of books had 
caused the missionaries to refuse to sell more than 


one copy at a time to a single purchaser, will not 
forget his persistence and jovial good temper. 

He and two other island chiefs, when almost all 
the islands were in the hands of the Roman 
Catholics, stood firm in spite of much opposition, 
and that, though their own knowledge at that time 
was only trifling. Would that we had as good 
reason to believe that the other two are the Lord's 
as we have of him ! 

The large Island of Sese is not generally visible 
from Kome, but we can imagine that we see it some 
ten miles beyond Bukasa, rising high above all its 
satellites, twisted like some great snake upon the 
Lake's bosom. All its chiefs are Roman Catholics; 
yet on it are some three hundred and twenty Protes- 
tants, nicknamed, we are told, ' the people of the 
Holy Ghost,' and enduring some persecution and 
opposition for the truth's sake, ignorant as they are. 
The Native Church has sent them two teachers and 
a plentiful supply of books; and they hold the fort 
there, despite the presence of three French Mission- 
aries ; the latter have had a station there for years. 
Pray for this little struggling church. 

On that Sese group of islands, and on those in 
the midst of which Kome lies, there are some twenty 
churches ; and in no part of Uganda has a greater 
desire for * reading ' been shown than on Sese. May 
the holy fire be passed on to Buvuma and Kigulu, 
and on through the islands that lie along the 
Kavirondo coast to Ukerewe, and there mingle with 
the flame that is already glimmering at Nasa, from 
which bright reports have reached us lately of the 


Gospel preached each Sunday in six different places 
round; and where the Gospels are rapidly being 
translated into the Sukuma language and being 
printed. And may it also spread down the western 
side to Bumbide, most northern of the islands in the 
German sphere, and along the southern shore of the 
Lake to Nasa again." 

Scene IV. 

** It is Sunday afternoon, and some eighty souls 
are just about to be admitted into the visible Church 
by baptism. They are arranged — men on the left, 
women on the right — in a great semicircle by the 
font near the door of the church. One by one they 
answer the solemn questions, and are baptized into 
solemn covenant with the Triune God. 

It is a solemn scene, and yet the truth must be 
confessed, that familiarity has taken much of its 
solemnity away. How solemn must have been those 
secret baptisms ten years back, when baptizer and 
baptized must have felt that before long the baptism 
of water might be sealed by a baptism of blood ! 
But, now, when fifty baptisms take place on an 
average every week, and when, alas, a profession of 
Christianity is sometimes made for the sake of social 
advantages, the service is often not what it might be. 

How have the candidates been prepared for 
admission to this solemn rite ? Probably some two 
or three years ago they began to learn to read, 
taught in their own homes by their friends, or, 
perhaps, by teachers in the various country churches. 
It is astonishing what an educational value this 


reading of God's Word has ; their ver}^ physiognomy 
seems to be changed by it, so that it is almost 
possible to tell a reader by his outward appearance. 
And in no other way does the reality of God seem to 
impress itself so forcibly on the native mind as by 
the daily poring over the pages of the New Testa- 
ment, at first mechanically, and then with more and 
more glimmering of meaning, until at last the Divine 
message of love is intelligently grasped, and perhaps 
driven home by some sermon, or meeting, or the 
faithful words of a friend, and another catechumen 
is added to the roll, and, we trust, another soul to 
the company of Christ. It is a noticeable and 
deeply instructive fact that profession of conversion 
never, or hardly ever, has been made by a M Uganda 
who cannot read, except, of course, a few special 
cases of blind or old. At the close of some of our 
services, after-meetings are sometimes held, and those 
present are asked to signify in some way their 
acceptance of God's gift of eternal life ; out of many 
hundreds the writer has never known any such 
profession made by a person who had not learnt to 
read ; the very words are not intelligible to those 
who hear them for the first time — sin, salvation, 
love, faith, etc., convey little meaning to their minds. 
Be it understood, at the same time, that on this very 
account we take the greater pains to point out to 
tl-.em continually that there is nothing to prevent an 
absolutely ignorant and utterly sinful soul, the very 
moment the Gospel message is grasped and believed, 
obtaining the full and free salvation which we 


In some such way, with infinite variety of detail 
and experience, has each individual of the class of 
thirty cate-^humens, whom we see sitting at the feet 
of, say, Samuel Naganafa, now Mukasa, been brought 
to desire baptism ; some, alas, no doubt, have been 
influenced by worldly motives of social advancement, 
or by the mere example of others to enrol themselves 
for admission into the Church. 

For two or three months past they have been daily 
carefully instructed in St. Matthew's Gospel, and are 
now half-way through St. John. One of them reads 
aloud a passage, then Samuel makes comments and 
asks questions, and his pupils ask questions, some 
wise, some foolish, e.g., ' Why did John the Baptist 
send disciples to the Lord to ask if He were the 
Christ ? ' ' Wisdom is justified of her chldren— 
what does this mean ? ' ' What was the name of 
Peter's wife's mother ? ' ' and his wife's name ? ' 
' How is it that Herod, whose death we read of 
some time ago, reappears on the scene ? ' and so on. 

When four month's instruction or so is com- 
plete, they will be examined, and some tears shed, 
probably, if they ' fall ' {i.e., are ' ploughed ') ; then if 
no reason appears, on inquiry made, to prevent their 
baptism, they will be brought forward the next 
Sunday afternoon. And so the Church grows." 



We have glanced at the past, how about the future? 
Time was, when Uganda was regarded as a mere 
isolated centre in the mission field, a land of 
romance but little more. Bat that day is gone. 
Africa is no longer looked upon as the special 
preserve of the explorer, the scientist, or the 
Missionary. We need fields for the development 
of our commerce, and an outlet for the energies of 
our race. A great part of our British Empire lies 
in Africa, and we must see to its development. We 
have had put before us the ideal of a great highway 
from Cairo to the Cape, with its two most important 
junctions, Khartum and Uganda, and whilst we 
owe the conception of this project to one well- 
known living Englishman, we must not forget those 
to whom, as much as any, is due the interest now 
being taken by Great Britain in this splendid 

Gordon from the north, Livingstone from the 
south, advanced along this line, each to die alone, 
though under very different circumstances ; yet 
each was fully convinced that some day Christian 
England would awake to her responsibility to these- 


regions. " I beg to direct your attention to Africa," 
said Livingstone in the Senate House at Cambridge 
in December, 1857. " I know that within a few 
years I shall be cut off in that country which is now 
open ; do not let it be shut again ! I go back to 
Africa to try to make an open path for commerce 
and Christianity ; do you carry out the work which 
I have begun ; I leave it with you." 

"An open path for commerce and Christianity" 
was that for which these great pioneers lived and 
died, one in purpose with the men who laid down 
their lives for Uganda, the chief connecting link 
between the north and south of the new World's 

It is not for naught that Mackay pleaded for 
helpers to help to bridge the chasm between 
civilization and savagery, that Hannington lost his 
life ere he reached Uganda, furnishing by his death 
a trumpet call to the Church, more eloquent even 
than his life, or that Pilkington gave to the Uganda 
nation a completed Bible, in itself the best bridge 
from heathenism to Christianity. These African 
graves do not breathe to us the language of despair, 
keenly though we feel the loss of leaders such as 
these, are they not an inspiration to others to follow 
in their steps ? There has been some talk of revenge 
as our brave soldiers step by step approached 
Khartum, and when the great victory of Omdurman 
was an accomplished fact we have been told that 
Gordon is avenged. But is it so ? Gordon's death 
calls for something more than that, above all it is a 
challenge to Christian England to carry the 


blessings of Christianity thoughout that land which 
has been desolated by the scourge of Muslim 
fanaticism. How, then, is this to be done ? The 
answer which Pilkington would have given may, we 
think, be summed up in one word, " Uganda." 

It has ever been the aim of British administrators 
to employ the peoples of savage or semi-civilized 
lands to be the chief agents in the development of 
their own countr}^ and to this fact may largely be 
attributed the success of British colonisation. In 
no part of the world is this so important as in 
Central Africa. Whatever is to be done there must 
be done by the native races, and our first efforts 
should therefore be directed to learning the native 
languages, studying the characteristics of different 
peoples, bringing to the front those who are qualified 
to be the leaders of others, rather than attempting 
to do all b}' European agency. 

Pilkington realised this most fully, and in his 
plans for the development of the Uganda Mission, 
he regarded Uganda and its people as the great 
means by which East Central Africa at least should 
be evangelised. 

With this in view he put forward what he called 
" A three years' enterprise in Central Africa," to 
correspond to the celebration of the last three years 
of the first century of the Church Missionary 
Society all over the world. 

In this he said : — 

" The Church Missionary Society is entering on a 
Three Years' Enterprise. The key-note is Exten- 
sion. New supplies of men and means, it is hoped, 


will be forthcoming. How are they to be applied 
to the best advantage ? May God Himself guide ! 

With great diffidence, conscious as he is of only 
partial knowledge of the World's needs, and 
conscious also of the bias that must attend all 
strong affections ; with great diffidence, therefore, 
but none the less with great earnestness, does the 
writer put forward a Three Years' Enterprise for 
Central Africa, asking for it the calm, and balanced, 
and prayerful consideration of all friends of the 
Society and especially of those who directly control 
its operations. Need it be said that the basis of 
operations for this proposed enterprise is Uganda ? 

Half of the great country of Unyoro is ready to 
receive evangelists ; there are already under instruc- 
tion a good many hundreds of its inhabitants ; 
through this country, and by means of its people, 
lies the road to the Nile valley and to the great 
forest. Kavirondo is open, Usukuma is open, 
Karagwe is open, Koki is open. Nkole and Ukedi 
are within reach and touch, though not absolutely 
open at present. In fact, for two hundred miles east, 
south and west from Mengo, the country lies, for 
the most part, wide open to the Gospel ; to the north, 
seventy or a hundred miles is open. The country 
is healthy ; native help is available as it is nowhere 
else in the world ; the desire for reading has already 
been carried to some of the extreme points within 
this radius ; in language, and sentiment, and mode 
of life, the whole region is closely knit together ; in 
a word, there is good reason to hope that, as far as 
local conditions are concerned, a circle, including 


within its radius of two hundred miles the three 
lakes, the Albert, Albert Edward, and the Victoria, 
an area (excluding the lakes) of nearly 100,000 
square miles, might be fully occupied, if not 
evangelised, within three years' time ! 

How would this enormous extension — multi- 
plying by ten at least the present area of occupied 
territory — be undertaken ? 

Wanted, first, European leaders for bands of 
native evangelists. The province of Kyagwe, as 
already mentioned, more than 2,000 square miles, 
is being evangelised by means of two Europeans at 
the central station, directing the work of seventy 
or a hundred native helpers. At the same rate, a 
hundred European Missionaries would be needed 
to lead and organise the evangelisation of this vast 
circle. Will they not be forthcoming ? 

Wanted, secondly, an army of native evangelists ; 
it is believed that the raw material for these would 
be forthcoming, but in order to train them efficiently, 
a few more European missionaries are needed. 

Wanted, thirdly, about ten men to master the 
native languages, and translate into them. 

Wanted, in all, from home, one hundred 
additional men missionaries and some lady mis- 
sionaries, full of the Holy Ghost. 

Is this too large a demand ? 

Even judging by the irrational method of a 
count of heads, it is not much ; these men are not 
needed for Uganda, not even for this circle of two 
hundred miles only ; we plead for the millions upon 
millions of souls in Central Africa ; and we only 


ask for a paltry one hundred missionaries. Area 
and population alike call for large reinforcements in 
Central Africa. 

But there is another method, a rational one, of 
distributing missionary workers, and that is, so to 
dispose of available forces as to bring in the greatest 
return in the end. 

Take an illustration : There are two places that 
may be occupied. Let us call them A and B. To 
one or both of these, six missionaries are to be sent. 
At A, there is a great desire for instruction and a 
missionar}' spirit among the converted. At B, there 
are practically no converts and no missionar}' spirit ; 
in fact, the Holy Spirit is at work at A but not at B. 
Although the population of B is ten times that of A, 
the irrational, but plausible, method is adopted, and 
five are sent to B, and only one to A, and even so 
complaints are made that A is receiving more than 
its fair share of workers. 

After ten years, little or no impression has been 
made at B ; the five workers are discouraged and 
depressed, and their depression has acted on the 
Church at home. At A the work has progressed, 
but the workers cannot keep pace with the growing 
need ; and the missionary enthusiam, not having 
found any adequate outlet, has decreased. But let 
the other method be adopted, and let all the six be 
be sent to A, in spite of short-sighted objections. 
In five years, as one result of their work, a body of 
twenty well-trained native evangelists invade B ; by 
the end of another five years the fire of God has 
been transferred to the second centre. The Church 


at home and the Church abroad aHke are encouraged 
and strengthened in faith. 

But this is a digression. 

How would our supposed reinforcement be em- 
ployed ? 

Each fresh missionary would spend a year or 
more at first in Uganda ; he would learn the Luganda 
language, become acquainted with native ways of 
thought (the same through all that region), gather 
round him a few native helpers, and open communi- 
cations across the missionary frontier. To do this he 
would most probably settle down at the furthest 
C.M.S. station in the direction of his proposed ad- 
vance ; for instance, for Central Unyoro, Wadelai, 
and the Nile \' alley, he would proceed at first to 
Kinakulya ; for the west and the Great Forest, to 
Toro ; for the south, to Koki ; for the east and 
south-east, to Luba's or Mumia's ; for the north- 
east, to Xamuyonjo's. When the time appeared ripe, 
he would advance with his chosen helpers across 
the border, and open a tentative station some fifty 
miles beyond what had till then been our outpost ; 
this new station would in turn become a basis from 
which to advance still further, as fresh reinforcements 
came out. There can be little doubt that in places, 
more numerous than we could even wish to occupy 
by Europeans, the natives would extend a welcome, 
and in most cases build a native house for the mis- 
sionary, and supply him with native food. 

Consider (i.) the geographical position of 

(ii.) The present open doors. 


(iii.) The construction of a railway. 

(iv.) The suitability of the natives for evangelistic 

(v.) Their desire to engage in it. 

(vi.) Their preparation by contact with two typical 
forms of perversions of Scripture truth. 

(vii.) Their former leading position in the Lake 

(viii.) The past marvellous history of the country. 

(ix.) The abundant ' seed of the Church ' sown 
(martyrs, Bishop Hannington, Mackay, and many 

Are not all these leading up to a future worthy of 
such a past ? " 

Pilkington, as will be seen by much that has been 
already said, was a firm believer in the evangelisation 
of Africa by Africans, and in support of this he 
furnishes us with the following contrasts : — 

" An European is on a journey in Central Africa: 
how laboriously he trudges along, followed by a train 
of porters, who carry his tent, his clothing, his camp 
bed and bedding, his cups, plates, knives and forks, 
his box of provisions, his cooking utensils, his chair 
and table ; notice how eagerly he avails himself of 
the shade of any tree that he is fortunate enough to 
find at his mid-day halting-place ; see him carried 
over that great papyrus swamp, half a mile broad, 
on the shoulders of the strongest of his porters, 
themselves up to the chest in water. Observe the 
elaborate preparations for his meal ; the tent pitched, 
the table laid, the cloth spread on it, the plates, the 
tea, the meat, the potatoes, the rice ; and when all 


is done, it seems to him a rough and hard life, 
calculated to produce fever, or send him home, 
prematurely worn out, to a more congenial climate 
and surroundings. 

A Muganda is on a journey : how gaily he trots 
along; his head, it may be bare, it may be covered 
with a turban of cloth or bark-cloth, not for fear of 
the sun so much as for appearance sake ; or perhaps 
he is carrying all his luggage on a plantain leaf, 
twisted in turban shape, on his head. It is twelve 
o'clock ; he has had no food since the previous 
evening ; but he thinks nothing of that — he is pre- 
pared to march on, if need be, till sundown, fasting; 
but probably he will turn into one of the houses in 
the garden just ahead, and make an ample meal of 
steamed plantains or potatoes. He needs no table, 
table-cloth, or plates; the plaintain leaves which 
have helped to cook the meal, pressed down in the 
mouth of the huge earthen cooking pot to keep the 
steam in, will supply the place of all these three 
European necessities. Spread on the grass-covered 
lioor, they receive the mass of steamed and steaming 
plantains ; and the guests sit round, on mats if they 
have them ; and the master of the ceremonies divides 
the huge lump into chunks for each guest, using his 
hand, covered with a piece of plantain leaf, as a 
carving knife : and so they fall to, with their fingers 
for knives and forks ; they have previously carefully 
washed their hands with plantain fibre or with 
water. And so the lump disappears, as bit by bit 
they roll it in their hands, push in their right thumbs 
to make a sort of spoon, and dip it in the gra\y (if 


they have any), and so convey it to their mouths. 
The meal done, the hands are washed again ; and 
off goes our traveller, prepared to travel, should that 
prove necessary, for another twenty-four hours with- 
out any further meal, though he will be disappointed 
if he does not reach some hospitable roof that 
evening where similar refreshment will be provided. 
When night comes, no elaborate preparations are 
necessary ; no camp bed, no mosquito net, he simply 
undoes his pack, takes out his mat, lies down on it, 
and, wrapping himself up, head and all, in a bark- 
cloth, he sleeps till day-break. Is it surprising if we 
sometimes feel inclined to envy their simple lives ? 

Another picture: an European is teaching a 
class ; how slowly come his words, how painfully 
sometimes ; how he struggles to express himself ! 
Do you see the lurking smile on those faces that 
good manners would fain hide ? — but the struggle is 
a hard one ; some mispronunciation, some solecism, 
some mistake has provoked it. How flat some of 
his illustrations seem to fall ! And yet this is not 
some young missionary in his first attempt ; for 
years he has endeavoured to master the native 
language, and not without success ; but it is a 
partial success only. 

Beside this class is another, taught by a 
native. How the words flow from his lips ; how 
quickly question and answer and exposition follow 
one another ! If there is a smile, it is at some apt 
illustration or some apposite proverb : ' Does the 
monkey decide forest cases ? ' z.c, ' Is it reasonable 
to appeal to an umpire who has a personal interest 


in the point at issue ? ' or another of that infinite 
store. Africa must be evangelised by Africans ; 
surely this is the obvious moral that we are forced 
to drav^\ 

Africans are fitted for the work, because they are 
better adapted to the country. Especially are the\- 
better travellers than Europeans. Then they arc 
better adapted by their knowledge of the language 
and native modes of thought. An illustration which 
appeals to a European need not impress a native, 
and vice versa. Arguments which are conclusive to 
us prove nothing to a native, and again vice versa. 
Most important of all, it is impossible, too, in this 
case, to attribute the effects of the grace of God in 
his life to a white skin or to his bringing up. A 
native can say to a native with a cogency that no 
European's words can have, ' The Lord and Saviour 
who saved and saves me, can save you too.' 

Where are Africa's evangelists ? God must 
have them somewhere. Let us find them, and train 
them, and use them. The promise of the fulness of 
the Spirit is as much for the native as for the 
European, for the promise is ' to all that are afar off, 
even as many as the Lord our God shall call.' " 

But there is another contrast to which he would 
draw our attention, which shows to us the wonderful 
change which the Gospel has wrought in Uganda. 
He writes : — 

'' The work that is going on in Uganda is mainly 
carried on by natives ; the Sunday services, the 
preaching, the teaching, all are done by men who 
once were heathen. Do you know what that word 


means ? Ask old Isaiah, * the good-natured giant,' 
how three hundred brothers and cousins of the king 
were penned within the narrow compass of the dyke, 
that still may be seen by the roadside some two or 
three miles north of Mengo, and left there by their 
brother's orders to starve to death, a six days' misery 
of nameless horrors. 

*0h, a goat I was herding got lost, and so 
my master cut off my ear' — so a boy of fifteen 
answers, as if it w^ere the most natural thing in 
the world, when you ask him how he became so 

Ask Sezi, jovial Sezi, in spite of the loss of both 
his eyes, who it was that gouged them out, and 
why ? Ask any of our people what Heathenism 
means ; for they have seen and can tell you ; they 
know (better than many a wiseacre at home) what 
Christless humanity (black or white) is and always 
will be, when the salt taken away : it is left to itself, 
and relapses to its native corruption — inevitable 
consequence ! 

In those days, if some unfortunate courtier 
accidentally trod upon the king's mat, death was 
the sure penalty. 

In those days, none dared raise a protest when 
the king, to maintain his royal dignity, commanded 
the slaughter of all who happened to be standing on 
his right hand or on his left ; or of all whom a band, 
sent for the purpose, should meet in the streets. 
* Why kill the innocent ? ' we innocently ask. 
Their innocence is their doom. ' If I only kill the 
guilty,' so would the king have replied, ' the innocent 


will not respect me.' They have no word in their 
language for respect, except fear. 

In those days, no protest was heard when women 
and children were sold into the hopeless misery of 
Arab slavery. Now, even domestic slavery has been 
abolished, at least, its legal status. And in this 
matter the Protestant chiefs were the movers and 
imitators, so much so that Sir Gerald Portal, who 
was in the country at the time, considered that 
perhaps their movement was premature. To-day it 
is the law of the land that any slave may claim his 
or her freedom, and that it must be granted as a 
matter of course. 

Not that the Waganda had no religion of their 
own. They were very religious ; they worshipped 
and propitiated the spirits of ancestors. These spirits 
were believed to possess mediums, who uttered 
oracular sayings with foaming at the mouth, a close 
reproduction of the Delphic prophecies. There was 
the priest, too, who acted as go-between for the 
inquirer and the spirit-possessed medium. Many of 
the gardens of the country were set aside for these 
priests ; hence their bitter opposition to the Gospel, 
continued to this day. 

Once a man professed to be possessed by the 
spirit of the King Suna's dead dog, and went about 
yelping. By the king's orders, a fine house was built 
for him, and he lived in ease and luxury all his life ! 

Then charms were worn, and are still worn, 
and implicitly believed in. Horns (either actual 
horns or imitations in pottcTv) were tilled with 
various substances, supposed to have magical powers 


— for instance, blood or earth — and sold as certain 
remedies for various diseases. 

In old days, woman was but a beast of burden ; 
how wonderful to see her now in many places begin 
to take her rightful place by man's side ! It will be 
a gradual work — the elevation of woman ; but we do 
see it already proceeding. The arri\al of the live 
ladies who accompanied Bishop Tucker last autumn 
will, no doubt, greatly accelerate it. Cultivation is 
woman's work in Uganda, and too often the heaviest 
work is still left to her. The men are lazy ; the 
Gospel not only shows them the duty and nobility 
of work, but also provides them with motives for 

But it is in individual lives that the greatest and 
most marked change is apparent. A slave of drink, 
a big chief, was converted. He had been baptized 
long before, but had no strength to conquer this 
vice ; he had often prayed with one of the mission- 
aries that he might be saved from this curse ; he had 
even prayed with tears ; the will was there, but not 
the power. He was converted, and was enabled to 
win the victory. 

A Mohammedan began reading our books : he 
was convinced of their truth, and gave up Moham- 
medanism ; a month later, so he told us, he 
accepted God's gift of eternal life. ' In old days,' 
he said one day, ' I was like a bird trying to fly 
without wings ; I thought my fastings, my prayers, 
and ceremonies would save me. I now know that 
Christ is the way.' 

Another, a teacher, told how, long ago, when he 


first became a nominal Christian, he had hoped to 
be saved by his works ; as he read God's Word he 
found this would not do, and then he hoped he 
would be saved by a combination of faith and works. 
' But now I know that Christ is all.' Many have 
given up the vicious habit of smoking Indian hemp ; 
the Christian Church will not permit any hemp 
smoker to be baptized, so utterly inconsistent is it 

Could you come and see some Sunday morning 
while men and women, brought up as heathen, 
gather round the Lord's table, and reverently eat 
and drink those ' pledges of His love,' there would 
be a joyful echo in your ears of the Apostle's 
words — ' These have been washed, these have been 
sanctified, these have been justified in the name of 
the Lord Jesus Christ, and by the Spirit of our 
God ! '" 



Owing to the length of time occupied in carrying 
his work through the Press, Pilkington did not 
leave England until two months after the party 
with whom he expected to travel to Uganda. He, 
however, managed to reach Frere Town in time to 
accompany them, as the following letter indicates :— = 

Frere Town, 

Friday, 27th November, 1896. 

I arrived, after a delightful voyage, on Wednes- 
day, to find the party still here, hoping to start 
to-day. We are now hoping to start to-morrow. 
Goods, including bike, here, all right. Europeans 
and Waganda boys all well, so there is much to 
thank God for. . . . 

We are really to start, it seems, to-morrow 
morning — it is now nine p.m., so I suppose we 

I rode up and down the road here on my bike. 
A sort of light case, easily detachable, has been 
made for it ; I propose to ride it where possible. 

There has been much rain lately, and so the dry 
part of road near the coast ought to be much better 
than usual." 


The early stages of the journey are described in a 
letter to Mr. G. A. King, dated : — 

" Kibwezi 

(190 miles from Mombasa), 

Monday, 14th December, 1896. 

I came on here last Friday on my bike from 
Ndi (called seventy-eight miles, but eighty-one and 
seven-eights by my cyclometer). The caravan, 
which I propose to meet to-morrow about half-way 
and come back with it, will probably be here on 
Friday, perhaps Thursday. I started at 5.5 a.m., 
and got here, not much fagged, at 3.55 p.m. — the 
first time, I suppose, anyone, even a native, has 
come from Ndi to Kibwezi in one day. 

I came on to try to settle a serious difficulty 
about some of our porters who are claimed by a 
trader. I have every confidence that it will be all 
right now ; no thanks to me and my bike, for I 
found it settled already, I may say, when I got here, 
and no wonder, for we have made it a matter of 
special prayer for a fortnight past. This is the 
second remarkable, and from the merely human 
side, most unlooked-for removal of difficulties in 
answer to prayer, since I reached Mombasa in the 
nick of time on the 25th to start on the 28th ! 

We ha\'e had a delightful journey — especially 
we bicyclists ; when travelling with the caravan, we 
reach our camping-place, though we start last, two 
hours before the rest, generally before eight a.m., 
and so entirely avoid the sun. We expect to leave 
this day week; we should be at Nzawi, where 


are some American Missionaries, for Christmas." 
Having once tasted the joys, not unmingled with 
sorrows, of bicychng in Central Africa, he determined 
to go on ahead, and our next letter, reproduced as it 
was written on the journey, gives us his itinerary to 
the borders of Busoga ; it is instructive for intending 
bicyclists in Central Africa. 

•' Kikuyu, 

Christmas Eve, 1896. 
Here I am at Kikuyu, about a hundred miles, I sup- 
pose, ahead of our caravan. I came on to fetch Mr. 
Snowden, of the Railway, who was here till to-day, 
because his wife, who is travelling with our caravan, 
is, or was, seriously ill. I left her with the rest at 
Kibwezi. I shall carry this letter in my pocket (for 
having come thus far, I shall, if practicable, go on to 
Uganda), and give it to the down mail men when I 
meet them, and so you will have the latest news of 
my movements. I have come on very successfully, 
a few punctures, etc., and delays, and bad bits of 
road, but neither I nor the bike are any the worse ; 
and now I am in this splendid healthy country. 

Sunday, 3rd January, 1897. — Nandi Station. I 
arrived here the day before yesterday, Friday ; 
and so am now within sixty miles of Mumia's in 
Kavirondo, which is go miles from our station at 
Luba's, which is 60 miles from Mengo. The 
whole journey from this on is inhabited, and 
so, thank God, the worst part of my journey is 
over. I propose going on to-morrow to Mumia's, 
if possible ; if not, half way. 


From Kibwezi (from which I started a fortnight 
a^o) to this place is about 330 miles, most of it 
desert and full of wild beasts ; from here to Mengo 
is 200 miles of friendly country. 

Let me give you my itinerary : — 
Sunday, 20th December. — Kibwezi to Nzawi, 57 j 
miles, only half the road rideable ; arrived 5.30 
Monday, 21st. — Kilungu, 10 miles, fearful road. 
Tuesday, 22nd. — Machakos, 37 miles, fearful road. 
Wednesday, 23rd. — To Kikuyu, 47 miles, good 
road ; 2^ hours delay owing to tyre ; arrived 6 
Thursday, 24th. — Rested. 

Friday, 25th. — To Naivasha, 47 miles ; tyre broke 
down three times ; should have been there 2 
p.m., got there 5.30 p.m., having had to ride 
on deflated tyre, or should have been benighted ; 
tyre spoiled. I had to go on through Christ- 
mas Day, because I knew^ I should have to go 
on with mail men, who had left Kikuyu on 
Christmas Eve. They reached Naivasha on 
Saturday, and so I had to start on Sunday. 
Saturday, 26th. — Rested ; taiiea to mend tyre. 
Sunday, 27th. — \\'ent on with mail men, sho\ing 
bike, to Kambi ya Mbaruk, 29 miles : hard 
Monday, 28th. — To Kambi }a moto, 30 miles 

through grass 5ft. high ; fearful day. 
Tuesday, 29th. — To Ravine, 25 miles ; bad road. 
Here Mr. Jackson with infinite kindness put on 
rope and raw hide on hind wheel as substitute 


for tyre, and gave me provisions for the road. 
At all the other stations, Nzawi and Kilungu, 
the American Missionaries ; at Machakos, Ains- 
worth and De Hinde ; at Kikuyu, Hall and 
others ; at Naivasha, Major Smith ; here Dr. 
Macpherson, have been kinder even than I 
could have expected. 

Wednesday, 30th. — To Mianzini, 18 miles; bad 
road ; had to shove bike nearly all the way. 

Thursday, 31st. — To Chini ya kihma, 24 miles ; 
shoved bike nearly all the way, but in riding one 
very rough down hill piece cracked my seat 
pillar — not a very serious damage ; when it 
breaks through, the longer bit of it will do very 
well. After getting into camp, had a nasty bit 
of fever, which lasted till I got here. 

Friday, ist January, 1897. — Came on here with 
some difficulty, 16 miles, pushing my bike 
because of the cracked seat, which I propose to 
repair here with wire pro. tern. 

Saturday, 2nd. — Rested and bound my seat pillar 
with Dr. Macpherson's kind help. Recovered 
from fever. So glad of a rest again. 

Sunday, 3rd. — Rested and wrote this letter, which 
I propose to give to the down mail men. I met 
the other down mail the day I left Kikuyu, just 

after the final explosion (E knows the 

sound) which convinced me that my hind tyre 
would carry me no further. It was 1.20 p.m., 
and I was about 20 miles from Naivasha, and 
so I had no wish to alarm you by writing a 
letter under such circumstances ; besides, it 


would have taken too much precious time. It 
has been most wonderful how accidents, 
punctures, etc., have occurred so as to let me 
reach each station by sundown ; and how, in 
spite of it all, it has been possible to come 
steadil}' on : e.g., had the tyre given way ten 
miles before, on Christmas day, I don't know 
what would have happened. Had I waited at 
Kikuyu for Christmas I could not have gone on 
from Naivasha. Had I had fever on any other 
of the six days from Naivasha here, I should 
have failed to get here with the mail men, and 
could not have come on alone. The mail men 
left this yesterday ; I can now go on alone, and 
it doesn't matter whether I catch them up or 
not. The bicycle goes fairly well on the rope 
tyre ; it is down hill from here to Mumia's, 
2,000 feet lower, I may get there to-morrow. 

Now I will finish up this letter, so that if I meet 
the mail men suddenly, I need only add the place 
where I shall be, and anything else of importance in 
a pencil postscript. 

I had one accident with tyres at least every day 
from Kibwezi until the final breakdown ; it's the hot 

Tuesday, 5th January. — Safe at Mumia's. All 
well ; a few more troubles with bike, but all 
right again. I hope to reach outskirts of Usoga 
to-morrow, Luba's probably two days later ; 
then two da}S to Mengo. 

Your Homocea (the box you gave me when I had 


that bad fall) has been invaluable to me ; my left 
le^ has been a little sore, but is healing rapidly. 

I came yesterday from Nandi to a place where 
Corporal Clark of the road party is camped, bridg- 
ing a river — 40 miles or so ; thence here only 20 

I leave this letter here, as the mail men leave 
Liiba's to-day, and I might miss them. You ought 
to get this letter in two months' time." 

His next letter is from Uganda: — 

" Namirembe, Mengo, 

28th Jan. 1897. 

All's well that ends well — and here I am, having 
been here for 17 days, all well. I had a little attack 
of fever a few days ago, but I'm all right again now. 
I got here on the nth January, having been 23 days 
from Kibwezi where I left the caravan. I shall 
probably find that I gained more than a month on 
the caravan. From England two months later — in 
Uganda one month earlier ! 

From Ndi here (650 miles) in 19 journeys — a 
record for Africa ; of course I waited at Kibwezi and 
went back from there and rested elsewhere ; and so 
I did not travel from Ndi here in 19 days ; but it 
took me only 19 days of actual travelling. 

I am busy getting my house into order, though, 
of course, until the caravan arrives (I expect it in 
another 12 or 15 days) I can't do much; and yet 
with borrowed and native things I am beginning to 
be comfortable. I am having a daily class in 
Luganda for the ladies especially, but the others 


come too. A language examination is to be held as 
soon as possible. 

I propose to devote the greater part of ni}- time 
for a year or two to the language. I hope to start 
almost at once on the exercise book I used to speak 
about when at home ; then on an enlarged and im- 
proved grammar, and then on a dictionar\- : or 
rather the last two simultaneously. I am looking 
forward to letters from home : they ought to be 
here in ten days or so. 

I took 74 days from London to Mengo — a record, 
I think ; and of that I practically spent 9 days at 
Kibwezi — I say ' practically,' because I actually 
rested only three, and then went half wa\' back and 
returned. I hope when next I write to be able to 
say that my bike is once more in running order. I 
am waiting for my extra tyres, and Rowling, who is 
very good at mechanics, to help me. In the mean- 
time I have taken it all to pieces except the centre 
crank. I have taken out and cleaned no fewer than 
138 steel balls ; this is the number the machine con 
tains exclusive of said bracket which has, I suppose 
20 more. A couple of the spokes of the hind wheel 
have given, and one crank is twisted, nothing much 
wrong besides except the tyres. 

I've not had time to look round yet, so I say 
nothing about the state of the country, but externally 
all is well." 

The impression produced upon the missionaries in 
Mengo, by Pilkington's sudden appearance among 
them, is thus described by Miss Chadwick. 

" About half an hour before tea time I was in my 


room .... when I heard a strange voice 
saluting the children down in the pathway below% 
and thought ' No one from Kampala talks Luganda 
like that, yet it's not any of our men that / know.' 
A minute later Tabitha and some of the youngsters 
came up simply yelling — Pilkingtoni ! Pilkingtoni ! ! 
and we at first declined fiatly to believe them. 
How Mr. Pilkington, who, when we last heard, 
had not even arrived at the coast, should have 
passed and left the others behind, and arrived a 
month sooner than we expected even to see them, 
seemed incomprehensible; however, by the aid of 
his bicycle, he had done so, and arrived absolutely 
without an attendant, with nothing but a tiny 
knapsack. . . . 

A rather unshaven man in borrowed clothes 
decided!}' too small for him — he beats even Mr. Pike 
in stature — and about as sunburnt as a man can be. 
Furthermore, having overtaken the mail men, some 
little way back, he had stirred them up to such effect 
that we got, on Monday, the letters not supposed to 
be due till Friday." 

Of the value of his language lessons, already 
referred to, Miss Chadwick writes : — 

" I have already written to mother about Mr. 
Pilkington's unexpected appearance a month before 
w^e were expecting any of them .... I had 
always heard his praises sung so very loudly . . . 
but after a week's acquaintance and two grammar 
lessons, I am quite ready to join in the chorus of 
admiration of a truly great and good man. As for 
his Luganda, it is just beautiful. He is giving us a 


lesson every evening at 6.30, but I fear it will last all 
too short a time." 

On February 26th, 1897, Pilkington writes: " The 
rest of the party got here on Monday, the 15th, live 
weeks after me, having come across the lake by 
steamer, except Baskerville, Cook and Weathcrhead. 
The latter stayed in Usoga, and the other two got 
here on the 19th, a week ago. 

I have chiefly been engaged in getting my house 
in order, making tables and shelves, &c., and getting 
boys, and teaching them something, especially to 
cook. My old boys have got married most of them, 
or are going to be. Talking of cooking, an exciting 
incident has just happened. A bottle of barm I was 
making has burst and flown all over the room in 
small pieces, but no harm done. Yesterday, the 
corks flew out, and Hall (who is staying with me, 
having arrived yesterday from the islands) and I 
were douched with barm ; but I didn't expect the 
bottle itself to burst. . . . The new men are 
scattering day by day to their various destinations. 
I am glad to say that they have been specially 
requested to devote their first eight months, at least, 
to the language. 

I have been examining some of those who have 
been one or two years here. Miss Chadwick has 
done the best of all at present, and Miss Browne 
very good. Ireland for ever ! " 

By March 26th, Mr. Rowling's assistance had been 
procured for the unfortunate bicycle, and a letter of 
that date describes the method of repair : " My time 
for the last few days has largely been taken up with 


mending my bike, or, rather, in giving Rowling some 
feeble assistance in so doing. He has made a 
wonderful job of it : soldered and riveted a brass 
plate into the broken rim, mended two or three 
spokes, adding a piece on to one with a wire nail, put 
a copper plate on to the cogged wheel where it was 
cracked, straightened (and is going to harden by 
heating and plunging in oil) my crank, and, most 
remarkable of all, soldered on to the main hub a tiny 
piece of steel, so that the loose crank now fits 
perfectly. He has also strengthened the seat pillar 
by putting into it a piece of hard wood, tight fitting. 
We stripped my old outside tyre of the rubber, and 
put it on with the new one (which, to our horror, 
3'esterday, we found a size too large) over it ; and I 
have this morning been riding about Mengo as 
comfortably as ever on it." 

Apparentl}- the tyres did not last very long, and on 
April loth we read : " I am mending my tyres with 
the sap of a native rubber tree, called ' mulemu,' and 
I'm inclined to think it is going to prove successful. 
It takes a long time drying, but we are not in such a 
terrible hurry in Africa as you are at home. 

I'm hoping to go over to Ngogwe (Baskerville's 
Station) on it for a mission in a fortnight or three 
weeks' time. It is thirty-five miles — a nice day's 
ride in this countr}-. 

When the rains are over, probably in May or June, 
I hope to go out a good deal through the country, to 
try to iniprovu the organisation of the teachers and 
the nati\e church generally." 

By April 23rd, he was convinced that " pneumatic 


tyres wont do hero," and adds, '' I am trying to 
convert mine into solid ones by stuffinj; the outside 
cover with cotton wool." 

The solid tyres do not seem to have been a ^^eat 
success, but much later on in the year he writes : 
" My bike is on the go again. Fresh t\Tes (pneumatic) 
have come by post, thanks to the kindness of my 
friend Mr. G. A. King." 

With regard to the progress of the work, he writes 
on 19th May, 1897, to Mr. Dowse the Vicar of the 
parish who had adopted him as their own mis- 
sionary: — 

" The increase in the number of adherents is not 
going on as it was two or three years ago. Why is 
that ? I can't answer, of course, dogmatically, but 
I fancy there are two reasons. The greater part of 
the country has now been e\'angelised, or those who 
were willing to become readers have been taught a 
certain amount ; those who were opposed are only 
coming over in small numbers. Then, again, a 
considerable number who began reading two or three 
years ago, but were really ne\'er converted, have 
learnt to read, and ha\e read a Gospel or two, and 
then have got tired and given up reading, and their 
example is deterring others, for they are supposed 
to know all about Christianity, and themselves so 
suppose, and yet they don't think it worth while to 

These remarks apply chiefly to Uganda itself, 
and not to the surrounding countries. 

We are in great difficulties about the self- 
support of the Native Church. I fear a good many 


teachers have been sent out too hastily, and we 
shall be forced to recall them. But I trust we 
shall always abide by the principle of entire self- 
support ; Waganda teachers supported by Uganda 
money, and by that alone, whatever happens. I 
notice a considerable growth of independence in 
the leading teachers and Christians. A great deal 
of work is now being done by natives, which two 
years ago was being done, and only could be done, 
by Europeans. There is a large district between 
the Capital and the Lake, which is now in the 
charge of Yairo, who is in priest's orders; very 
encouraging reports of activity and really indepen- 
dent life have lately come in. We are just going 
to commit another district to native charge, the 
district of South Bulemezi, which Buckley is leaving 
for Toro, to take the place of our dear brother Callis, 
who has just been taken from us. We hope that 
this will prove as great a success as Yairo's district 
seems to be. My own work at present is chiefly 
that of looking after the supply of teachers in the 
various country places." 

On May 20th, 1897, Pilkington wrote to the 
Church Missionary Society announcing his engage- 
ment to Miss Bertha Taylor, who was a member of 
the second party of lady missionaries to Uganda. 

For some time after his return to Uganda, he 
seems to have been chiefly occupied in making plans 
for the further consolidating of the Native Church, 
and particularly with the subject of self-support. 
In the course of a letter written from Mengo on 
June 3rd, 1897, he writes concerning the principle 


of "Teachers supported wholly and only by the 
Church of which they are members." " The C.M.S. 
has come to the conclusion that if this Church were 
to depart at all from this principle, it would strike 
a blow to the Missionary cause all the world over. 

To support any native with forei^m money is to 
wrong the native Church, depriving it of a privilege 
and a stimulus to which it has a right. 

It is unfair to the teachers, depriving them of a 
powerful testimony to the Gospel ; when supported 
by native funds, they can appeal to these as evidence 
that natives like those with whom they plead, have 
found the Gospel so well worth having that the}' 
have been willing to deny themselves in order that 
others might hear it. 

It lays the teachers open to the suspicion that 
they are the bribed agents of foreigners who desire 
to denationalise the country for their own ends: it 
alienates from our side the patriotic feeling, and 
those men in whom this feeling is strong ; the very 
men we need to build a really independent Church. 

If it is objected that an infant church cannot 
support its own sons who are teachers, it surely 
seems reasonable to suppose that if the church has 
had strength enough to produce a genuine teacher 
sent by God, the less precious product of a few 
shells for his support will be forthcoming. 

On these grounds would it not be better to re- 
frain from sending out teachers than to send them 
out supported bv European money, w^hether loan or 

gift ? " 

At the end of this letter he says " I propose 


to ^^o to Budu and Koki, starting some day next 

On June 29th he arrived in Koki, in company 
with Mr. Clayton, having passed through Budu, on 
the wa\'. He found Mr. Leakey in Koki, and whilst 
there, sent messengers to the neighbouring district 
of Nkole to find out if there were opportunities for 
work there, but without any satisfactory result. A 
few days later, Mwanga revolted and fled from 
Mengo, having done his best to rally round him 
people from the various countries round Uganda. 
Some idea of the state of affairs may be gathered 
from a letter written by Miss Chadwick on July 
24th, 1897. 

"It has really been an anxious week for every- 
body, and, of course, all kinds of rumours came up 
to us of people deserting to Mwanga. However, 
the native chiefs as a body, seem to have been 
splendidly loyal to the English, and their people, as 
a whole, to them. 

This is, I think, the most hopeful thing we have 
seen in this people yet, as, after all, we have to 
remember we are foreigners, and personal loyalty to 
Kampala would hardly have carried this vast body 
of men to fight as they have done, if it were not 
that English rule is more or less understood as 
synonymous with law and order and religion, and 
we now see, in spite of all our doubts and suspicions, 
the reality of the friendliness of the Baganda. 
Practically, all the big chiefs have decisively declared 
in favour of law and order, and against a return of 
despotism and heathenism, which Mwanga's victory 


would certainly have meant for the time being. 
He meant to turn every Englishman out of the 
country, I believe. That is pretty widely felt, and 
it is really everywhere spoken of as a war between 
religion and heathenism. ... I have not yet 
told you what the news really is, for which we feel 
so much thankfulness. Our last letters went out 
just when our men had gone off to Budu to look for 
a runaway king. Then came two or three days of 
quiet, and then, very disturbing reports that the 
kingdom of Koki, next door to Budu, w-as inclined 
to befriend Mwanga ; that the King there, 
Kamswaga, had lent him 300 guns (an utter fabrica- 
tion), and that the lives of Messrs. Pilkington, 
Leakey, and Clayton were in great danger. In fact, 
Mr. Pilkington sent up a letter to the effect that 
they had no hope of getting up to Buganda again, 
but might possibly escape to German territory, and 
made his will, but this was before they knew how 
close our party were on the heel of the king, and as 
a matter of fact, Kamswaga, so far from helping 
^Iwanga, lent Mr. Pilkington and his party 50 guns 
to protect themselves." 

Pilkington's short summary of the rebellion is 
given in a letter dated August nth, 1897 : 

'• When I was in Koki, Mwanga ran to Budu (50 
miles from us), and raised a rebellion against 
Europeans, Christianity, civilization, and progress. 
He and his friends are for a return to heathenism, 
slavery, polygamy, and all the horrors of the past. 
Ninety per cent, of the people are probably witli 
him in their sympathies, but, in the body, they 


prefer the 5;ide which musters niost gjrins and holds 
the gardens. We were in some danger for a time in 
Kold, but on the arrival of a large native army and 
Major Ternan \Aith 200 Soudanese in Budu, and 
after two \'ictories, each of them fought and won 20 
or 30 miles from where we were, things became all 
right, and I came back. Mwanga has been to the 
Germans, who have taken him prisoner. The 
French priest? in Koki retired to German territon', 
when it all began. Our sta3Tng was useful, we 
believe, in helping Kamswaga, King of Koki, to 
stand firm, and indeed Major Teman, so he told us, 
^Tote to Lord Salisbun' to say that our action in 
staying there had helped the Administration. God 
will bring good out of it all, as always hitherto," 
*• August 17th. On Saturday, Daudi Chua, a 
one-year-old baby, son of Mwanga. wa? proclaimed 
King. The two Katikiros (Protestant and Roman 
Catholic) "with Zachariah Kangao, one of the native 
deacons, form a Council, who will rule the country 
till His Majest}' is old enough. Politically, the 
Protestants are immensely stronger than the}' were, 
which is good for the peace and stability of the 
countr}', but a fresh danger to the Church. Still, 
we can't but be most thankful. The Commissioner 
asked me to translate into Luganda. and read out 
for him, the proclamation and a speech to the 

CM \rriK win. 

Till:; SKii^Nh \ir riw . 

Willi tlu^ (\n\Miatioii ot" tlu' lU'w kmi; aiul ilu* 
lorniation ot" a C\nincil nt' trnstworilu rhii>t"s to 
adniiiiinistc^r the L^oxornnuMU. it was Iii^jhhI tliat 
peace aiul qiiieinoss had been sitiuihI onci' niorr. 
and on the i uh o\ Septotnhia-. rilkiiii^ton writes:' — 

•• Mwani;a has been taken to ilie S^nitii oi' the 
Lake, -and the eountiv is setthni; iKnvii attain. 

I am workini^ at the Liiiina kini^iKiL^e. tlie 
shepherd tribe ; and also at ' l'^lenientar\- LnL;anda 
Lessees.' I have just perceived how ver\- important 
a part o{' a hingua<:^e intonation is (^thanks to Sweety 
and I am working- at that specialU ncwN ; many 
\\iM\ls are distin^jnished only by intiMiation. 

1 am ha\im; two classes per week witli the 
teachers, to help them with (x) preaching;, (ii) read- 
ing, and iiii"! teachini^s 1 am tryini; to show them 
at present how to preaeh horn notes. 1 i^c^ round 
to different Churches on Sundays, and taki> special 
note of the preaching and reading. 

Miss Chadwick is doing something at Arabic ; I 
have lent her m\' (^irammar. 1 am teaching one of 
ni\- boys to use tiie typewriter ; he can cc^p\- fairl\- 
correctly now ; I hope soon to make great use of 



We have started football lately ! I play most 
afternoons. It is great fun and good for the boys. 

The rebellion is still greatly hindering the work ; 
I hope we shall be able to resume fully soon." 

With regard to the football, Dr. Cook writes : — 

" September 2nd. 

" Archdeacon Walker has got a football out from 
England, and Pilkington has been diligently coach- 
ing the boys. It is very comic to see him, as he 
enters with great earnestness into it. . . . I, with 
my boys and about ten others, stood Pilkington and 
another lot. We got two goals each. We play on 
a large grass field between Kampala and Rubaga." 

Meanwhile a danger was at hand greater than 
had ever yet threatened British rule in Uganda. 
In order to understand the situation rightl}', it may 
be well to remind ourselves of the method by which 
the Protectorate of Uganda was being administered. 

At the end of 1891 it will be remembered that 
Captain Lugard brought into Uganda a number of 
Sudanese who had at one time been in the service 
of Emin Pasha. Since then — in spite of the treachery 
of Selim Bey, which, but for Captain (now Major) 
Macdonald's prompt action, might have had the 
most serious consequences — the Sudanese had con- 
tinued to be employed as the chief soldiers in the 
employ of the government, and not only was the 
garrison at Kampala largely composed of them, 
but they were scattered over the country to form 
garrisons for various forts under the command of 
British ofBcers. That their influence upon the people 


of the country had been an evil (jiie, can hardly be 
doubted, but, at the same time, they were well- 
trained fighting men, and served a useful purpose. 
During 1897, they had their hands full, going from 
one place to another, in order to put down the 
revolution, and in August, Major Ternan left for 
the coast with a company of Sudanese who had 
been engaged in the recent fighting, in order that 
they might join Major Macdonald, who had been 
commissioned by the British Foreign Office to con- 
duct an exploratory expedition to the north of Lake 
Rudolph. Major Ternan accordingly met Major 
Macdonald, as arranged, and the latter was just 
starting northwards, when, owing to certain reasons, 
disaffection spread amongst the Sudanese who had 
come from Uganda, who accordingly deserted him. 
Of the causes of their disaffection, and the blame 
which might be attached to one or another in this 
unfortunate affair, it would be out of place to enter 
on here, suffice it to say that after unsuccessful 
attempts on the part of Mr. Jackson to come to 
terms with them, they made their way towards 
Uganda. They were joined by other Sudanese 
from the forts of Nandi and Mumia's, and eventually 
reached Luba's in Busoga. 

With this brief statement we may now turn to 
the graphic account of the outbreak of the mutiny 
given by Dr. A. R. Cook. 

" In Camp at Luba's, 

October 23rd, 1897. 
Terrible things have happened in Uganda. 
About three weeks ago, 300 Sudanese soldiers from 


the Kampala garrison at Mengo were sent to the 
Ravine (Eldoma station). Here they mutinied, and 
looted a large store of the Government Agent's. All 
the Government stations in Uganda are manned by 
Sudanese — perhaps i,8oo in all. After revolting, they 
determined to march back to Mengo, raise the 
standard of revolt, kill the Europeans, and start a 
Sudanese kingdom here. They arrived at the station 
of Nandi and looted it, obtaining, among other 
things, 3,000 rounds of ball cartridge. Fortified by 
this and provided with plenty of ammunition (nearly 
40,000 rounds of ball cartridge), they marched on to 
Mumia's. Here Tomkins, though he had only heard 
native reports, had fully grasped the situation and 
promptly disarmed all his garrison, armed the few 
Swahilis he could get, and prepared to fight to the 
death. He cut down all the bushes round, &c., and, 
when the mutineers appeared, they were so cowed 
they failed to attack. Passing on through Busoga, 
they killed the natives and looted the cattle, finally 
appearing before the fort at Luba's. 

Meanwhile, rumours were brought to us at Mengo 
of what was going on, and Major Thruston started 
off at once to meet the mutineers. Though repeatedly 
warned, he declared he was perfectly confident as to 
the loyalty of his men, and, being a splendid Arabic 
scholar, was confident that he could persuade his 
troops to remain loyal. He crossed over to Luba's 
and admitted thirty of the mutineers to a conference. 
They immediately revolted, with the whole garrison 
at Luba's, and seized Major Thruston and the 
commander of the fort, Wilson, and tied them up. 


They then occupied the fort. Of course, the great 
danger was a general rising of the Sudanese through- 
out Uganda and the massacre of the Europeans. 

We heard the news at Mengo on Monday night 
(October i8th). The officers were seized on the 
Saturday, and we also heard that our two Busoga 
missionaries, Weatherhead and Wilson, were both 
in chains in the fort. This turned out to be false. 
Special messages were instantly sent out to all 
the ladies and other missionaries to come into the 
capital. That night we hardly got any sleep, as it 
was feared the Sudanese garrison would rise. It 
was decided, on the advice of the native chiefs, not 
to send the ladies away to an island, as they said 
they would be probably speared en route by the 
Bakopi. Early in the morning, we made our way to 
Kampala, and rifles and ammunition were served out 
to us, the Hotchkiss gun and Maxim were got ready, 
and then the Sudanese were summoned to lay down 
their arms, which, to our great relief, they did. 
Meanwhile, the Baganda were being summoned in 
from every side, and hurried off to the Nile to 
prevent the Sudanese from crossing. It was a great 
answer to prayer that the Sudanese were disarmed 
so quietly. None of us quite knew if we should go 
back that morning. 

On Tuesday, October 19th, matters were so 
threatening that Mr. Wilson (the Acting-Commis- 
sioner of Uganda) asked for volunteers from the 
missionaries, as he wanted to give moral support to 
the Baganda, and they placed great confidence in 
the missic^naries. We at once held a conference of 


all the male missionaries in Mengo, and it was 
decided that Pilkington and myself should go — 
Pilkington to act as interpreter, myself for medical 
duty. This was the unanimous opinion of Archdeacon 
Walker and all the missionaries. Meanwhile, the 
Mohammedan Baganda had joined the rebels, and 
things looked worse and worse. Fortunately, the 
ex-Mohammedan king, who is a political prisoner at 
Mengo, remained loyal to the Government, and 
actually sent in the letters he had received from the 
rebels telling him to make himself king and kill 
us all. 

The attacking expedition consisted of fifteen 
Europeans and 2,500 Baganda, but, at the last 
moment, all the Europeans — save Pilkington, 
myself, Captain Malony, and Mr. Malick — were 
recalled, and also 1,000 of the Baganda, to make 
the capital quite secure. 

We started — i.e. Pilkington and myself — at 3 p.m. 
on Wednesday afternoon, and pitched our camp 
with the Katikiro, only four miles from Mengo. 
After three and a half hours' sleep, we struck camp 
at 4 a.m., and marched thirty-one miles to Ngogwe. 
We were not too tired, though my arms were badly 
burnt by the sun ; for, as the sky was covered with 
clouds, I marched with my coat off and my shirt- 
sleeves rolled up to the elbow. At Ngogwe we 
found Baskerville, who decided to stick to his post 
until we returned, as in all probability the station 
would be looted if he left. He is now in no danger, 
as our army is between him and the Nubians. 

Meanwhile, we heard the distressing news that 


the Government steamer, which had been sent with 
forty Sudanese soldiers and a Maxim to fight the 
rebels, had fallen into their hands. These Sudanese 
revolted and joined their companions, seizing the 
unfortunate engineer. We had also the good news 
that Major Macdonald and nine other Europeans 
had hastily armed 300 Swahili porters, and, with 
eighteen Sikhs, were keeping one day's march behind 
the mutineers. Pilkington and I were well ahead of 
the other Europeans and were able to open up com- 
munication with Macdonald. 

All the ladies and men, with the exception of the 
two Koki missionaries and Buckley in Toro, were 
now in the capital. Weatherhead had a marvellous 
escape. He was on his way up to the capital for a 
visit to Ngogwe, when, hearing there was trouble in 
Busoga, and not understanding that the Sudanese 
had risen, he at once started back to look after his 
station. He arrived at Luba's at 4 a.m., Saturday 
morning, just as the rebels were tying up the officers, 
and, passing quietly through them, went over the 
hill to his station and lay down to rest. In a short 
time, however, Unwa, the faithful Buganda teacher, 
rushed in and told him of his imminent peril. 
Groups of Sudanese were then passing the house, 
and he hurried him away through the bananas and 
jungle, and crossed the Nile at Jinja (the Ripon 
Falls), and so on to Ngogwe, carrying him on his 
back part of the way, and then put him in a 
canoe and sent him to Mengo, where he is now 
safe and sound. Of our other missionary in 
Busoga, Wilson, we have no definite news, but 


believe he is quite safe, as he is twenty-live miles 

To return to Pilkington and myself. After a very 
disturbed night at Ngogwe, we pressed sternly on, 
and at g a.m. sighted the Nile in the far distance. 
We arrived opposite Luba's, and saw the rebel fort 
five miles across the Nile at 1.45 p.m., having 
reached the Nile (fifty-nine miles) in forty-six and 
a half hours after leaving Mengo. Meanwhile, 
Major Macdonald had fought a great battle on the 
19th, and, though driving off the rebels, was very 
short of ammunition. One European, Fielding, was 
killed and two wounded, including the doctor. We 
had sent back urgent messages for ammunition, and 
at 10 p.m. it arrived. There were only two small 
canoes, however, so we sent it on and crossed over 
with the Katikiro and a fleet of twelve canoes in the 
morning, and, making a long detour to avoid the 
rebel fort, arrived at Macdonald's camp at noon, 
where we had a most warm welcome. Meanwhile, 
(on the 20th) the rebels had brutally murdered the 
three prisoners — Major Thruston, Wilson (the 
Government captain), and Scott (the engineer). Mr. 
Jackson, who was on his way to be Acting-Commis- 
sioner until Mr. Berkeley returns, is severely 
wounded in the shoulder, and thanked us most 
warmly for coming. Dr. Macpherson was wounded 
himself, and, though suffering, had all the wounded 
to look after ; he was most grateful for my assistance. 

The fight on Tuesday was most severe ; Major 
Macdonald's party managed to arrive at the summit 
of this hill without the Nubians seeing them. He 


had with him two Maxims, about 250 Swahih porters 
armed with Sniders and Martinis, eighteen Sikhs, 
and nine other Europeans. Next morning, 300 of 
the Sudanese, who, of course, are well armed and 
disciplined, came up laughing and chatting, and 
saying they did not want to light. Major Macdonald 
was not a man to be caught napping, and quietly 
got everything ready. Suddenly the Sudanese 
crammed cartridges in their rifles, and lired on the 
Europeans, and for over five hours a fierce battle 
raged, the men often firing at only thirty yards' 
distance. At length the ammunition of the Major's 
party began to fail, and, giving the word to charge, 
they made a desperate effort and drove the Sudanese 
back, who then retired to their fort, where they have 
remained since. They lost sixty-four killed and 
thirty or forty wounded ; our side, one European and 
sixteen Swahilis, and many severely wounded. The 
Sikhs fought magnificently. 

Some 2,500 Baganda have now crossed over, and 
the rebels are cooped up. The Hotchkiss gun is 
expected in to-morrow, and if they do not surrender 
then, I suppose there will be some desperate fighting. 
Of course, there are no non-combatants in Centra 
Africa, and Pilkington and I take our turn at night 
duty, etc., each having our allotted station in case of 
an attack. The view from here is superb, thirty 
miles each way. Through the telescope we can see 
the rebels walking about below ; two or three days 
longer will settle it. There are still some corpses 
lying unburied, but the vultures and hyatnas are 
clearing them a\va\-. 


My hands are very busy with the wounded. I 
know how much you will remember us in prayer — it 
is a very serious time for Uganda. We cannot feel 
certain as to the garrisons in Budu (300 Sudanese 
and two officers), or in Toro and Bunyoro. The 
answers to prayer have been wonderful. The camp 
is pitched about the very spot where Bishop 
Hannington was seized. If it comes to a fight, 
Pilkington and myself will stick together. I feel 
sure we are here in the line of God's will." 

"October 24th, (Sunday). 

Mail now going — the rebels are hemmed in and 
cannot possibly escape. The men here are practising 
for an attack as I am writing. We had an alarm 
this morning, and all turned out ; but the enemy 
merely sent out a strong picket. There are now 
most of the big Baganda chiefs with us, and perhaps 
3,000 or 4,000 spearmen and guns. Port Victoria 
and Ntebe are practically abandoned. The capital 
is strongly manned and quite safe. No one quite 
knows what will happen, but it will be just right. 
Of course. Mission work in the country is almost 
stopped. The ladies behaved very pluckily when 
the alarm came. All eight are at the capital, and 
probably Namirembe Hill will be fortified. 

Poor Thruston ! Only a few days ago he was 
chatting with me, and showing me his sketches 
from Bunyoro ; and Wilson, too, last time I was 
here, he so kindly entertained us — and now . 

God has been very good to us and the whole 
Mission. For a time there was very real danger, 

rHi-: SHCoxD ^1UTIN^^ 329 

but now I trust it is passing over. x\ll of us 
Europeans (except the sick ones) are messing 
together. I must now close." 

Dr. Cook has already referred to the reasons 
which led him and Pilkington, after conference with 
the other Missionaries and with their unanimous 
approval, to help in quelling the mutiny ; but as it 
is of the greatest importance to understand the 
circumstances aright, it may be well to quote 
Pilkington's own view of his position and also that 
of Major Macdonald. 

On November 23rd, Pilkington wrote a letter 
to be sent home in case of his death, in which he 
says : — 

" We go down to-morrow morning to attack the 
Sudanese, and, as it is possible that I may be 
killed, I write this to be sent to you in that case. 
I hope you won't think my being here and my 
going down with Capt. Woodward unjustifiable for 
a Missionary. It seems to me to be my clear duty, 
and I go without any doubt or hesitation. I may 
be able to save many lives by maintaining a clear 
understanding between Woodward and the Waganda : 
to put it another way, a misunderstanding might 
cost many lives." 

But nothing could make matters clearer than the 
following letter from Major Macdonald, in answer 
to a letter from Archdeacon Walker, asking how 
soon it would be possible to dispense with the 
services of the other Missionaries who remained 
with Major Macdonald after Pilkington's death: — 

•• With reference to vour wish to know whether 


it would not be possible to withdraw from the army 
in Usoga the two members of the C.M.S. who are 
serving with the forces there, I have the honour to 
inform you that I consider such a step would be 
highly undesirable and fraught with public danger. 
Messrs. Lloyd and Fletcher, together with the late 
Mr. Pilkington, whose death I so deeply deplore, 
have lent invaluable assistance in acting as inter- 
preters between the Government officers and the 
Waganda, in carrying orders and in preventing 
misunderstandings which might so easily occur. 
Their withdrawal in this crisis would undoubtedly 
greatly detract from the value of our Uganda levies, 
who, in the siege of the mutineers' fort, at Lubwa's, 
have to fight in a way to which they are quite 
unaccustomed. I have no hesitation in saying that, 
but for the presence of the members of the Mission 
with the army in Usoga, the Waganda would lose 
far more heavily than they have done, as they would 
not so fully understand the wishes and plans of 
the officer commanding. 

I need hardly mention that the present military 
operations are quite different from an ordinary 
campaign in Uganda, as our very existence, whether 
Government officials, missionaries, or traders, 
depends on our quelling this mutiny. It behoves 
all British subjects, whatever their profession, to 
stand together until the mutiny is suppressed, and, 
far from agreeing to the withdrawal of Messrs. 
Lloyd and Fletcher, I would ask you whether you 
could not spare another member of your Mission 
to help these gentlemen in their arduous duties. 


I am aware that these duties are not those for 
which they came to Uganda, but when the existence 
of the Protectorate, and consequently of the 
Missions, the lives and honour of English ladies, 
and the saving of bloodshed are at stake, I have no 
hesitation m calling on all British subjects to assist 
in these military operations to the extent of their 

When these circumstances are realised, and when 
it is understood that the Missionaries were not 
fighting against the natives of the country, but 
standing shoulder to shoulder with their own native 
brethren to help to defend them and their country 
from what was in effect a foreign invader, who 
could suggest that they were not in the place of 

But to return to the situation in Busoga. On 
November 4th, Dr. Cook returned to Mengo in 
charge of Mr. Jackson and others who were 
wounded. Pilkington still remained on, anJ on 
November 12th, 1897, after referring to the battle 
described by Dr. Cook, which took place on 
October igth, he writes : — 

" Next afternoon, the friendly Waganda began 
arriving, and then the position began to change to 
what it is now ; the Sudanese shut into their fort, 
and getting into a bad way for want of food. 

The Waganda have twice fought with them, and 
inflicted considerable loss, losing themselves, alas, 
some 25 killed and 80 wounded ; five of the killed, 
teachers of ours. We are waiting now for ammunition 
before going down to the fort to invest it by making 


a fort or forts if necessary round it. I am to go 
with Major Macdonald as ' staff officer ! ' in order to 
interpret between him and the Waganda. 

We had a night attack the other day ; the 
Sudanese came up in the middle of a great storm 
and fired 20 or 30 shots ; we fired 137, inchiding 
some rounds from the Maxim. It was 12.30 a.m., 
and I got wet through. We have night watches, 
after every second night, at first more frequently. 

The Waganda fought most bravely the other 
day, to the great surprise and admiration of the 
men here ; but their praise is poor compensation 
for the lives of our friends. 

Dr. Cook returned a week ago to the Capital 
with Mr. Jackson (shot through one lung, going on 
well) and other wounded. About the same time 
Fletcher, Lloyd and Wilson, all of C.M.S., came 
here, so we are four missionaries here ; and two 
Roman Catholics came a few days later. 

Captain Kirkpatrick, one of Major Macdonald's 
officers, is a cousin of Lefroy of Delhi, and met E — 
at Delhi. 

Captain Woodward, also, was at Harrow, and 
so knows many whom I know. 

Major Macdonald, you remember, was in 
Uganda before, and saved the country from a 
Mohammedan outbreak. He has saved it a second 
time now. No man has been in Uganda for whom 
I have a greater respect and admiration. 

The great danger was that the rest of the 
Sudanese in Uganda and Unyoro, over a thousand 
in all, would join the mutineers, and that they 


would be joined by all the Mohammedan Waganda : 
or that the rebel heathen part\-, Mwanga's friends, 
would seize the opportunity to make fresh trouble. 
However, up the present all is quiet. 

The rest of Major Macdonald's expedition, 400 
strong and four Europeans, have been sent for. 
And 800 Indian soldiers from the Coast are ex- 
pected in a couple of months. Then things ought 
to be pretty secure. But, after all, our trust is, 
and has been, in God, who has always so wonder- 
fully overruled all sorts of evil in this country to 
His glory invariably." 

" Luba's, 

26th November, 1897. 

Dearest Mother, — 

I must write a line to tell you of the fight 
two days ago, lest you should be anxious. We went 
down to the fort first thing in the morning, the 
Wasoga and Waganda on our flanks. However, 
the Waganda went too fast ahead, and were met by 
the Sudanese, whom they drove back into the fort, 
but with frightful loss to themselves, 71 killed 180 
wounded, among them one of my friends, Obadiya. 
who wrote you that letter, shot dead. 

We t 00k up a line about 250 or 300 yards from 
the fort. I was with Woodward, who was in 
command, about 50 yards further back, but I 
spent most of the day superintending the making, by 
Waganda, of a fort which we intended to occupy at 
night, about 450 yards from the fort. Firing was 
very brisk at first, and two or three sorties were 


made, and driven back, but the heavy tiring was too 
much for the Waganda workmen, of whom one was 
killed and one wounded ; but they would run away 
in parties when the bullets came much over our 
heads ; and so by evening the fort was not finished, 
and we had to leave it. The Sudanese broke it up 
next morning. 

The position in Uganda is still serious, because 
more Sudanese may mutiny, or there may be a fresh 
anti-European rebellion among the Waganda ; but 
these things haven't happened yet, thank God. 
And the Sudanese here are much reduced in 
numbers, and can have very little communication 

The rest of Major Macdonald's expedition (450 
rifles) is expected soon, and Indian troops. 

It's terrible to see these Waganda being killed 
in a quarrel not theirs but ours 

It was some comfort to share a little of the 
danger the other day. I sometimes half wish that 
some of us Europeans had been killed, or at any 
rate wounded, if it weren't for friends at home. 

All the Europeans except those on watch and 
three Roman Catholics came to a prayer Meeting 
the evening before. 

We, and the Country, and God's work here, are 
all in His hands, and it's all right. 

Your loving son, 

G. L. Pilkington." 

This letter, written in pencil, is actually the last 
letter received from him. 


On December nth, the following:;- letter was 
written by Major Macdonald to Archdeacon 
Walker :— 

nth December, 1897. 

Dear Archdeacon, — 

I am very sorry to say that Pilkington was 
killed in to-day's fight. I know w^hat a loss this 
is to you all and to Uganda, and more especially 
does my heart-felt sympathy go out to Miss Taylor, 
as such brave, fine men as Pilkington are scarcely 
found. I cannot quite express what I feel, as not 
only have I lost in Pilkington an old friend, but my 
brother was also killed in to-day's fight. We also 
lost seven natives killed and fifteen wounded, and 
the Waganda lost three killed and ten wounded, 
but the Nubians were completely defeated, and lost 
more than all our loss together. 

The Nubians fought desperately to prevent our 
cutting the last of their shambas on the right, but 
it was no use ; they were repulsed at every point 
and driven from the position they took up, and the 
Waganda, under Fletcher, completed the destruction 
of the shambas. 

So our victory, though dearly purchased, was 

Yours very sincerely, 

W. R. S. Macdonald." 

This letter was accompanied by a detailed account 
of that sad day from the pen of Mr. A. B. Lloyd : — 


" The Fort, Luba's Hill, 

December nth, 1897. 

But I must tell you some of the details. It was 
arranged this morning that the banana gardens 
from which the Nubians get their food should be 
cut down by the Waganda. A covering party was 
to go out to the front, clear the gardens of all 
Nubians, and the cutting party directed by our dear 
brother, to follow after. The advance began about 
seven a.m. Pilkington took up his position with 
Captain Harrison, who was leading the attack. 
Presently Pilkington's boy (Aloni), who was by his 
side, shouted out ' There they are, close to us.' 
Both Pilkington and Captain Harrison saw men 
coming towards them, but thought them Waganda, 
and told Aloni so, but he being quite sure about it, 
fired a shot into them as they advanced, and this 
proved, without doubt, that they were Nubians, for 
they then opened their fire upon our men. One man 
took several deliberate aims at Pilkington, but 
missed him. Then Pilkington fired a few shots at 
him, but the shots went wide, and then it was that he 
fired again at our brother, shooting him right through 
the thigh and bursting the femoral artery. He 
cried out, ' Harrison, I'm hit,' and sat down on the 
ground. One of Harrison's Nubian officers then 
shot at the man, who was still close by, w^ho had 
wounded Pilkington. He missed him, and the 
fellow returned the fire, hitting the officer in the 
left arm, breaking his arm, and shouted out to him, 
' Bilal, what are you doing here ? Go back to 
Egypt. Have you come here to fight against vour 


brothers?* ' Yes,' said Bilal, 'you arc rebels, and 
we will wipe you all out.' And with his right hand 
he drew his revolver and shot the man who had 
killed Pilkington. 

While this was going on Harrison had made 
arrangements for some Waganda to carry Pilkington 
back to the fort. Aloni knelt down by his side and 
said, ' Sebo bakukubye,' (' Sir, have they shot you ? ') 
Pilkington replied, ' Wewao omwana wange bank- 
ubeye ' (' Yes, my child, they have shot me ') ; then 
he seemed to get suddenly very weak, and Aloni said 
to him, ' My master, j^ou are dying, death has 
come,' to which he replied, ' Yes, my child, it is as 
you say." Then Aloni said, ' Sebo, he that 
believeth in Christ, although he die, yet shall he live. 
To this Pilkington replied, ' Yes, my child it is as 
you say, shall nevej' die.' Then they carried him 
some little distance to the rear of the battle 
which was now raging most furiously. When 
they had put him down again he turned to those 
w^ho carried him and said, ' Thank you, my 
friends, you have done well to take me off the 
battle-field ; and now give me rest,' and almost 
immediately he became insensible and rested from 
his pain. 

They then brought him into the camp, but we 
soon saw that the end was very near. We did all 
we could to restore him, but he fell quietly asleep 
about 8.30. 

Just before they brought in Pilkington, Lieu- 
tenant Macdonald was brought in quite dead, 
shot right through the spine by Nubians concealed 


in the long grass. It was awful work, and one's 
heart seemed to melt within one. 

The fight lasted till about 12 o'clock midday. 
The banana cutting went on ahead and a huge 
garden was levelled to the ground. Fletcher took 
Pilkington's place in this work. At midday, the 
force came back to the fort. The Nubians had 
fought with more determination than ever before. 
They made repeated charges down upon our men 
and poured in volleys of shot. Still, our total loss 
was comparatively small. I suppose, all counted, 
Waganda and all, not more than 30 killed and 
wounded. The Nubians, we think, lost far more 
than that. We are hoping that they have got 
through their cartridges, and that they will not 
again be able to fight with such cruel results. But 
it is a bad business, and there must be a good deal 
of fighting yet before all is over." 

"December 12th. 

Last night another attack was made by the 
Nubians upon our lower fort, but with little success 
— not more than two wounded on our side. 

We buried Macdonald and Pilkington last even- 
ing under a tree outside of this fort. I read the 
English burial service, and all the Europeans, with 
the Sikhs, attended. A most solemn time." 



To give expression in any adequate degree to the 
sense of the loss sustained by the Church of Christ 
and the British nation generally, by the death of 
George Pilkington, would occupy more space than 
we have at our disposal. The public Press, secular 
and religious. Committees of Missionary Societies, 
and individuals of all ranks and opinions, have 
joined with one voice in lamenting the sudden 
cutting off of a life characterised by such singular 
gifts and graces. 

But most touching of all are the messages that 
have been received from the people of Uganda, from 
his fellow-missionaries, and from Government 
officials who knew him in the field. 

First of all we may give, as representing the 
feelings of the Christians of Uganda, the letter of 
the Rev. Henry Wright Duta, Pilkington's chief 
assistant in the translation of the Bible. He writes 
to the Rev. E. Millar as follows: — 

" Uganda, 

December 14th, 1897. 
My Dear Millar, — 

How are you, m\' friend ? 1 Lell you 
about the sorrow which has jus I come to us about 


our brother, Mr. Pilkington, whom we love very 
much. He was killed in the Sudanese war in 
Usoga on December nth. 

When he saw that the Baganda and the Govern- 
ment were going to war with the Sudanese because 
they had mutinied — you know what his love for us 
is — he went to the war with Dr. Cook, Lloyd, and 
Fletcher ; and of the Baganda many — no — were 
killed, but of all the English not one was killed. 
Pilkington was very sorry, and said, ' I want very 
much to die. I should have liked to have died in 
place of those Baganda.' Well, when they fought 
for the fourth time they killed him and Lieutenant 
Macdonald, but we were all very much distressed at 
the death of Pilkington. We all shed tears ; we 
cried our eyes out. Of Pilkington we have only 
now the footprints ; but it is difficult to follow in 
the footsteps when the leader is not there. Pilking- 
ton has died, but his work has not died ; it is still 
with us. He preached to all men the Gospel — 
Protestants, Roman Catholics, and Mohammedans, 
all lamented him when he died, because he was 
beloved by all. He always welcomed both the wise 
and the foolish. All black people were his friends. 

We jsorrow very much, beyond our strength ; 
we do not see among the missionaries whom we 
have anyone who can fill his place and take on his 
work. I worked very hard at teaching him 
Luganda ; he learnt it very well, and was able to 
speak Luganda like a native, and could translate 
any book into Luganda without my help, and I was 
not afraid of him making any mistakes. 


You see this is what makes all of us Baganda so 
sad. Where is another Englishman to give himself 
as he did to this work of translating our books ? 

Therefore, I want you, if you are still in 
England, and have not yet left, to go to the Com- 
mittee of the Church Missionary Society and tell 
them how our brother Pilkington has been killed ; 
tell them the Baganda sorrow very much for 
Pilkington — that if we could write their language 
(English) we would have written to them in tears, 
and our tears would have fallen upon the letter as 
we begged them to seek for a man of Pilkington's 
ability, and to beg him to come here and take on 
Pilkington's work. 

His body will be disinterred from Usoga, and 
buried here in Uganda, near our church, that we 
may always remember him. If we had known 
how to carve his likeness on stone we would have 
done it ; but the sight of his tomb will suffice us. 

My friend Millar, I entreat you, do not fail to 
send my message to the leaders of the C.M.S., that 
they may send us someone to succeed Pilkington ; 
and you yourself, do you beseech with tears those 
Christians, who have hearts filled with the love of 
Jesus Christ, to come and pity us and help us. 

It would be an excellent thing to circulate this 
letter among all the English. I know their love 
for us. They will hear us. I trust so. 

H. W. D. KiLAKULE." 

"Someone to succeed Pilkington," that is the 
plea of the Church in Uganda, and shall they 


plead in vain ? To our readers we leave the 
answer to this question. 

By his colleagues his loss is very keenly felt, as 
the following extracts from letters by Archdeacon 
Walker and the Rev. G. K. Baskerville, clearly show. 

Archdeacon Walker, in a private letter from Ugan- 
da, dated December 21st, 1897, writes as follows: — 

'' By telegram you will have heard of the sad loss 
this Mission has sustained in the death of Mr. 
Pilkington. We have lost not only a friend, but 
one who was completely devoted to the work here. 
Pilkington was always ready to give advice, and to 
hear patiently any matter that concerned the good of 
these people. He was a man of very great intellectual 
ability, and had gained a very complete knowledge 
of the native language. We had hoped that he 
would have prepared many useful books for these 
people. A commentary, and histories, as well as a 
grammar and dictionary, were all in contemplation, 
and partly begun. We always looked to Pilkington 
for advice in any forward movement. He was so 
fair in all his judgments, and so much respected and 
beloved by all the people, that his influence was 
very largely felt. We always felt that Pilkington 
was so much in sympathy with the natives that he 
could do almost anything he liked with them. But 
now he has been taken from us, and we are deprived 
of all the help and comfort his presence gave us. I 
trust the native Christians, and especially the 
ordained men, will exert themselves, and so supply 
in some measure what we have lost." 

Mr. Baskerville, \vho was Pilkington's companion 


on so many occasions, and especially in his journeys 
to and from Africa, writes : — 

" My heart bleeds about dear Pilkington. I can- 
not see how the gap will be filled in the work. 
Clear head, sound judgment, grasp of native 
language, customs, &c. ; universally respected by all 
creeds, a born leader. I feel as if I ought to write 
an ' In Memoriam,' but what can I say ? " 

From the Administration comes the following 
remarkable tribute. 

" Kampala, 

December 13th, 1897. 

Sir, — 

I have been asked by Mr. Jackson and the 
whole of the staff of this Administration to give 
expression to the deep and heart-felt sympathy, 
which they feel with the members of the Church 
Missionary Society in the loss they have sustained 
by the death of our friend, Mr. Pilkington. 

We join with you all the more deeply, in that 
we feel that the misfortune is one that falls upon all 
Uganda, and I am sure that no higher tribute could 
be paid, nor one which Mr. Pilkington would have 
esteemed greater, than the sorrow which is expressed 
by the native population of the country for which 
he has worked so hard, and for the honour of which, 
I believe we can say in all sincerity, he has given up 
his life. 

I am. Sir, 
Your most obedient, humble servant, 

George Wilson. 
The Venerable Archdeacon Walker. 



Captain Villiers, of the Royal Horse Guards, 
who had known Pilkington in Uganda, bears the 
following testimony to his work : — " It is owing to 
the attachment of the Protestant Waganda to men 
like Mr. Pilkington, that we have been able to hold 
Uganda so easily up the present time. In Mr. 
Pilkington's death the cause of civilization in 
Africa has received a severe blow, and England has 
lost a most devoted servant." 

One more quotation may be given, and that is 
from the letter of Bishop Hanlon, the English 
Roman Catholic Bishop in Uganda, who writes to 
Archdeacon Walker : — " We do heartily condole 
with you in the deep affliction that has befallen you 
by the death of a dear friend and fellow-labourer of 
such ability. I can to some extent realize, dear 
Archdeacon, what the death of a member of Mr. 
Pilkington's worth must mean to your mission, and 
that he has left a void it will be difficult to fill." 

From later information we learn that the wish of 
the people was carried out, and " on Friday, 
March i8th, Mr. Pilkington's body, which had been 
brought from Busoga, was buried with military 
honours at Mengo. The Acting Administrator and 
Major Macdonald and most of the officials and a 
large crowd of natives were present. The coffin 
was covered with a Union Jack, and a party of 
Swahilis and Punjabis fired a volley over the grave. 
The Rev. Henry Wright Duta and the Rev. G. K. 
Baskerville conducted the service. A grave had been 
dug in line with those of the other Europeans who 
had been buried on what is called the ' Church Hill." " 


Of the state of affairs in Uganda after Pilkington's 
death, it is sufficient to say that, after considerable 
trouble in dealing both with detachments of the 
mutineers and also with Mwanga and his con- 
federates, the peace of the country seems to have 
been once more secured. Missionary work has 
been re-opened in many places where temporarily 
it had been closed, including Luba's in Busoga, and 
it is hoped that the future may see a great 
development from Uganda as a centre for all the 
surrounding countries. 

And now we have told our story, and we may 
close most fitly by giving Pilkington's concluding 
message from the little pamphlet, "The Gospel in 
Uganda," and which is entitled, "A Last Word." 

"We have stood together now in fancy on 
Namirembe's far-viewing summit ; we have looked 
across Unyoro's plains into the far Nile valley and 
the vast Sudan : we have gazed in imagination 
across the Albert on into the Great Forest, and 
wondered when that strange pigmy race will learn 
that they, too, are objects of the Eternal Love. 
We have looked across many a mile into wild 
Kavirondo ; we have pictured the great Lake the 
centre of a united, active Church, sending its 
evangelists east and west, north and south, to many 
nations and many tongues. 

But now comes the question : Is all to end here ? 

Oh, let us be real ! Emotion is no substitute for 
action. You love Africa, do you ? ' God so loved 
that He gave — ' 

God gave — what? Superfluities? Leavings ? That 
which cost Him nothing? 
A 2 


' When ye shall have done all. say. We are 
unprolitable servants ; we have done that which was 
our duty to do.' 

If we are doing less than all, we are robbing God. 

What is the present position ? 

(i.) The Son of God sitting on the right hand of 
His Father, all power in heaven and earth His, 
having reached the gift of the Holy Ghost to pour 
on each yielded, believing soul. 

(ii.) The world wide open almost e\'erywhere. 

(iii.) Two-thirds, at least, of the human race 
having never heard the message of forgiveness which 
is for all. 

(iv.) Mohammedanism and Heathenism and In- 
fidelity increasing more rapidly than Christianity ! 

(v.) Christians (so we call ourselves) satisfied ! Is 
God satisfied ? 

We salve our consciences by doing a little, and 
refuse to recognize the fact that the work for which 
the Lord died is not being done. 

A house is being built : the workman, paid by the 
day, does not care if for each brick he lays two 
others fall down : he gets his pay. 

But is the Master satisfied ? 

Let us confess that hitherto we have only been 
playing at Missions. God has given us much more 
than our miserable efforts have deserved. 

Let us begin in a new way. 

New prayer ; new giving ; new going. 

The World for Christ, Christ for the World, in 
this generation ! " 


Accompanying Troops, Reasons 
for, 217, 323, 329. 

Acland, Sir Henry, 250. 

Aloni, 336, 2,2,7. 

Anonya Alaba, 246, 270. 

Ashe, Rev. R. P., 132, 139; 
Translations, 146, 265. 

Baganda, IF4, 224, 295 ; Thirst 
for knowledge, 12 1-3, 136-8, 
iS'j 199 ; Political parties, 
121, 168; Evangelistic work, 
145-7, 275-280; liaptisms, 
284 ; Ordinations, &c., 209 ; 
vSpiritual revival, 222 - 239 ; 
Teachers, 231, 236, 273-4; 
Native church, 272-286, 314. 

Baptisms, 284. 

Barter, Articles of, 76-7, 126, 

Baskerville, Rev. G. K., 63 ; 
Ordination, in; Furlough, 
240; Letters from, 160, 225- 
230, 342. 

Bassett, Mr., 4. 

Bayima, 228. 

Bedford, 51. 

Bexhill, 262. 

Bible Translation. 264-271. 

Bicycle Journey, 302-310. 

Binns, Rev. H. K.. 65. 

Books, 137, 164-8, 193, 199, 200. 

Boutflower, Rev. Cecil, 40. 

British East Africa Company, 
158, 170, 209. 

Broadrick, Mrs., i 5. 

Budu, 317. 

Buganda, 114-5; Revolutions, 
9c, 141, 161, 316 ; C. M. S. 
work, 113, 157, 236; The 
king, 119, 180-2, 316, 318, 
324; Country, 120; Roman 
Catholics, 142, 160-184; 
Provinces, 147, 152; Civil 
war, 161 -184; British Pro- 
tectorate, 209 ; Mutinies, 210- 
220, 320-338 ; Native church, 
272-286; Missionary meet- 
ings, 275-280 ; Future pros- 
pects, 287-301 ; New king, 

Bugaya, 281. 

Bukasa, 282. 

Bushell, Rev. W. D., 48, 64, 248. 

Busi, 279. 

Busoga, 145-6, 201, 322-338. 

Buvuma Islands, 281. 

Cambridge, 20-40, 252. 

Cathedral, 168, 201, 273. 

Chadvvick, Miss, 309, 316. 

Chagga, 75. 

Children's Special Service 
Mission, 23, 47, 132. 

China Inland Mission, 43, 52. 

Christian, The, 140. 

Church Collections, 278-9. 

Church Missionary Society : 
Boat, 103-4, 108-111, 1 16-7; 
Committee, 60-1, 205 ; Meet- 
ings, 61-64, 159, 248-9. 
Missionaries, 61-63, 65, ']2>'> 
89, 91, 113,217; Policy, 52-4, 
289-294,315; Secretaries, 58, 


65 ; Stations, 7^, 75> S9, 91, 
103, 115, 120, 293. 
Civil War, 160-184. 
Classics, xii, xiii, 4, 20, 21, 35, 

38, 41, 42, 50, 195-7, 252. 
Clifton College, 44. 
Climate, 115, 145, 150. 
Clothing, 140, 187. 
Cole, Rev. H., 92. 
Cook, Dr. A. R., 320-9, 331. 
Cooking, 131, :{ii. 
Cotter, J. D. M., 63, 78. 
Crabtree, Rev. W. A., 266. 
Crawfurd, Mr., 66. 
Daudi Chua, 318. 
Deacons, 209. 
Deekes, D., 107, no. 
Dermott, Rev. J. V., 84, 94, 107. 
De Winton, Mr., 139, 191. 
Donkeys, 84, 86, 95. 
Douglas, Rev. Shoito, 30. 
Dover College, 47. 
Dowse, Dean, 35, 313. 
Drury, Rev. T. W., 270. 
Dublin, 4. 
Dunn, Mr., 11 1. 
Duta, Henry Wright, 128, 130, 

143, 163, 339. 
Du Wallah, 174. 
East Africa : Description of 
Country, 70, 73, 89, 91, 94, 
115, 120; Fauna and Flora, 
70-4, 140, 190; Native races, 
95, 114, 228, 319; Religions, 
219, 299 ; British East Africa 
Company, 158, 170, 209 (See 
also " Buganda.") 
El win, Rev. E. H., 47. 
Emin Pasha, 82, 103, 149. 
Fauna and Flora, 70-74, 140, 

Fever, 72, 78, 146. 
Fisher, A. B., 231. 
Food, 69, 86, 95, 102, 10;, 11: 

Football, 320. 
Frere Town, 64. 

Gleaners' Union Meetings, 159, 

Gordon, Rev. E. Cyril, 118, 124, 

Gordon, General, 288. 

Hanlon, Bishop, 344. 

Hannington, Bishop, 66, 328. 

Harrow, 48, 109. 

Heathenism, 219, 299. 

Hey wood. Rev. R. S., 63. 

Hill, Mr., 78, 83. 

Holy Spirit, 222-9, 235, 258, 

Hooper, Rev. Douglas, 23, 51, 
81, 84, III. 

Hunt, Mr., 109. 

Hyslop, Mr., 39, 48, 261. 

Inskip, Rev. T. J., 44. 

Interpretation, 207, 212, 324, 

Islands, 205, 232, 281-4. 

Itinerary, 304-8. 
Jackson, Mr., 321, 332. 
Jaeger Boots. 40, 106, 187. 
Jungo, 237. 

Kampala, 176-8, 191, 210. 
Kamswaga, King of Koki, 141, 

Kanta, 175-8. 

Kasagama, King of Toro, 277. 
Katikiro, 133, 174, 214, 227. 
Keswick, 261. 
Kiganda (Swahili), 114. (See 

Kilimanjaro, 73. 
Kimbugwe, 152, 172. 
Kimegi, 89. 
King, G. A., 303, 313. 
Kisokwe, 90. 
Klein, Arthur, 25 
Koki, 141, 276, 317. 
Kome, Island of, 222, 225, 281. 
Kuilwe, 185, 189. 
Kyagwe, 278, 280. 
Lang, Rev. R., 191. 
Languages — see Philology. 
Leakey, R. H., 228, 316. 



Literature, Importance of, 167, 
200, 206. 

Livingstone, David, 288. 

Lloyd, A. B., 330, 335. 

Lubale, 219. 

Luba's, 321-338. 

Luganda, 1 14 ; Language study, 
106-7, 123, 192-208, 258; 
Translations, 123, 128-131, 
144, 192-208, 264-271; General 
suggestions, 192 ; Grammar, 
125, 134 ; Dictionary, 197 ; 
Specimens of roots, 199 ; 
Phonetics, 245, 257 ; Native 
proverbs, 259 ; Intonation, 

Lugard, Captain, 114, 121, 157, 

Lusoga, 198. 
Luyima, 198, 205, 319. 
Macdonald, Captain (now 

Major), 21 1 -2 18, 232, 320-335. 
McDonnell, Sir Alexander, 2. 
McDonnell, Dr. Robert, 3. 
Mackay, A. M., 72, 114, 265. 
Mackay, Sembera — see " Sem- 

Mamboia, 86, 89. 
Mengo, 115, 152 ; Plan of, 177 ; 

Cathedral, 168, 201, 273 ; 

Native congregations, 201, 

207, 273 ; mutiny, 323. 
Methods of work, 255. 
Mgunda Mkali, 102. 
Milk, 105, 185. 
Millar, Rev. E., 227, 339. 
Missionary Meetings, 61, 249, 

Mohammedans, 122, 211-216, 

234, 324. 
Molony, Rev. H. J., 24, 34. 
Mpwapwa, 91. 
Muganda, 1 14, 295. 
Mundara, King of Chagga, 75. 
Musa Yakuganda, 226-7. 
Mutesa, 167. 
Mutinies, 210-220, 320-338. 

Mwanga, 119, 160, 166-7, 180-2; 
Flight, 316 ; Taken prisoner, 
318, 324. 

Namirembe, 141, 273. 

Nassa, 205. 

Nathaniel, 276. 

Native Agency, 234, 248, 289, 

Native Church, 272-286. 314-5- 

Native Proverbs, 247-8, 259, 260. 

Native Tribes, 95, 228, 319 ; see 
also Baganda, Wagogo. 

Neil, R. A., 41. 

Nikodemo — see Sekibobo. 

Nile, River, 115. 

Noah, 144, 277- 

Northern Route, 240. 

Nsazi, 281. 

Ordinations, 79, 1 1 1, 209. 

Oxford, 249. 

Parker, Bishop, 114. 

Pembroke College, Cambridge, 
20-40, 53. See also Dr. Searle. 

Perry, Mr., 14, 17, 19. 

Persecution, 298. 

Philology : Methods of Study, 
84, 107, 192, 258-9; General 
suggestions, 192 ; Roots, 
197-9 ; Allied languages, 106, 
197, 205, 245 ; Phonetics, 245, 
257 ; Dialects, 197, 3^9 ; In- 
tonation, 319; see also Lu- 
ganda, Kimegi, Lusoga, Lu- 
yima, Swahili. 

PiLKlNGTON, George Law- 
rence : Birth, i ; Parents, i ; 
Boyhood, 3 ; Uppingham, 
xi.-xvi., 8 : Scholarships and 
prizes, 12, 14, 18, 20, 43 ; 
Tutorship, 15 ; Athletics, 16, 
320; Confirmation, 19; Cam- 
bridge, 20 ; C.S.S.M., 23, 47 ; 
Conversion, 26 ; Christian 
work, 28, 34 ; Gospel Mis- 
sions, 34, 36-8, 43-4 ; Classical 
tripos, 38 ; Testimonials, 41-2, 
50; Missionary call, 41; 



China Inland Mission, 43, 52 ; 
Harrow, 48; Bedford, 51 ; Ac- 
cepted by C.M.S., 61 ; 
Arrival in Africa, 64 ; Visit to 
Kilimanjaro, 65; Fever, 72, 78, 
146; Travels, 80-112, 240-3, 
302-310; Arrival in Uganda, 
117; Early impressions, 120; 
Language work, 123, 128, 134, 
144, 146, 192-208, 245, 264- 
271 ; Appeals, 150, 155, 291. 
345-6 ; Love for natives, 183, 
340 ; Spiritual revival, 222- 
239 ; Accompanying troops, 
229-232, 320-334 ; Annual 
letter, 236 ; Furlough, 240 ; 
Protestantism, 246, 270-1 ; 
Bible translation, 264-271 ; 
Bicycle journey, 302-310 ; En- 
gagement, 314 ; Death, 335- 
338 ; Burial, 338, 344. 

Pokino, 141, 178-9. 

Political Parties, 121, 168. 

Portal, Sir Gerald, 209. 

Portal, Captain, 216. 

Prior, Rev. C. H., 40. 

Protestants, 121, 160-184, 218, 

Rabai, 67. 

Railway, 240, 243. 

Rawnsley, Mr. 12. 

Reading, 121, 143, 206, 227. 

Religions, 219, 299. 

Revival, 222-239. 

Rochester, Bishop of, 252. 

Roman Catholics, 121, 142, 151, 
160-184, 233, 246, 270-1. 

Roots of Language, 197-9. 

Roscoe, Rev. J., 217, 227. 

Routes — Northern, 240-3, 302- 
310; Southern, 80-112. 

Rowling, Rev. F., 311. 

Rubaga, 179. 

Rutako, Pass of, 91. 

Saadani, 82. 

Searle, Rev. Dr., 59, 60, 252. 

Sekibobo, 218-9. 

Self-support, 314-5. 
Selim Bey, 157-8, 210-220. 
Sembera Mackay, 143, 161, 179, 

Sese Islands, iii, 130, 278, 

282-4. _ 
Siegel, Lieut., 96-100. 
Singo, 231. 

Skrine, Rev. J. H., xi-xvi, 13, 19. 
Slavery, 76, 299. 
Smith, Rev. F. C, 106, 146, 201. 
Stanley, H. M., 113. 
Stock, Eugene, 150. 
Stokes, Mr., 82, 98, 106. 
Student Volunteer Missionary 

Union, 253-8. 
Sudanese, 157, 210-220, 320- 

Superstition, 76, 189, 219, 220, 

278, 299. 
Swahili, 197, 203, 264. 
Sweet's ' Primer of Phonetics,' 

245, 257, 319. 

Taita, 'j'i,, 76. 

Taveta, 74-5. 

Taylor, Miss B., 314, 335. 

Taylor, Rev. W. E., 243. 

Teaching, 164, 273. 

Thornton, Douglas M., 262, 

Three Years' Enterprise, 289- 

Thring, Rev. Edward, 11, 14, 

Thruston, Major, 322, 326. 

Tore, I, 36, 38. 

Toro, 277. 

Translations, 123, 128- 131, 144, 
192-208, 264-271. 

Travelling, 87,93, 186, 240, 294- 
295, 302-310. 

Tucker, Bishop, 82, 137; Letters 
from, 92, 117, 123, 206-8, 209. 

Uganda — see under Baganda, 
Buganda, Luganda ; also 
under Climate, Political par- 
ties, Religions, &c. 

Ugogo, 94. 


Universities' Camps, 262. 

Water Supply, 145. 

Unyanguira, 92, 96. 

Weatherhead, Rev. H. W., 311, 

Unyoro, 236. 


Uppingham, xi-xvi, 8-19. 

Webb-Peploe, Rev. H. Murray, 

Usambiro, 103, 107. 

27, 46. 

Usoga — see Busoga. 

Welldon, Rev. J. E. C, 50. 

Usongo, 102, 106. 

Wigram, Rev. F. E., 54, 58, 167. 

Victoria Nyanza, 114, 281 

; see 

Williams, Captain, 146, 160, 

also under " Islands." 

170, 181. 

Villiers, Captain, 230, 344. 

Wilson, Mr. George, 323, 343. 

Waganda (Swahili), 114; 


Wilson, Mr (Government cap- 

under " Baganda." 

tain), 322, 326, 328. 

Wagogo, 95-101. 

Wilson, Mr. (C. M.S.), 323,325. 

Walker, Ven. Archdeacon, 


Wolfendale, Dr., 99. 

329, 342. 

Wood, Rev. A. N., 89. 

Wambuzi, 273-4. 

Zulu, 197. 


R. W. Simpson & Co., Ltd., Printers, Richmond,